From Maleficent, Tom in Tom and Jerry, Captain Hook, and even Peter Pan (in the original book) right through to the dark and twisted fictional characters like Dexter and Christian Grey we seem to revel in a bit of 'baddie love'.
Is it OK to love a baddie? Do we always have to be rooting for the good guy and must the white hats always triumph for a story to be 'right'? Do we need happy endings?
Does adult fiction follow a similar vein? Are we able to look into the dark and deal with it rather than live its horror if we read dark and terrifying books. Having read a few dark stories I often emerge feeling glad I'm not trapped there in the pages of the novel. But sometimes I might admire the 'baddie'; sometimes it feels good to see someone stretch outside of the confines of the rules and do what we might all like to do...but daren't.
Have you watched Fargo and wanted someone dead? Have you cheered a villain? Am I unusual or is this extra step one that helps us deal with the mundane and the ordinary. Does empathy with a bad guy sometimes help us to stay good? Could it be that James Bond, sneering, rich, and deadly, can help us live gentler lives purely because in our minds we can cheer for him, just for a second, before popping the veg on to boil and waiting for the children to wash their hands for tea.
What do you think?