“Pop Psychology has killed the Villain”

At UnHerd, Dorian Lynskey writes about villains, pop psychology, backstory and corporate storytelling. “What Lumet and Chayefsky were really getting at with their rubber-ducky quip was the pretence that explaining everything is akin to psychological veracity. We are all shaped by our experiences, good and bad, but rarely in a clear or simple way. Psychotherapists don’t identify one essential turning point in a client’s life (‘Hmm, Dalmatians, you say?’) and then close the case. Sometimes, one can know every factor and still encounter a terrifying, unilluminable void at the heart of a personality.”

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