"crime scene" In tune with the times: perfectly normal psychopaths

“The cold and the dead” is the psychogram of two very broken families who appear utterly normal to the outside world – and thus exemplary of the new thrust of the “crime scene” in Corona times.

As the most popular crime thriller in German-speaking countries, the “crime scene” always claims to be a mirror of reality in the Federal Republic of Germany: In recent years, the refugee crisis has left its mark, as has various horror scenarios on the subject of digitization. And because in all the lockdowns and quarantines since the beginning of the pandemic so many people (some perhaps for the first time in their lives) have been forced to really deal with themselves, the “crime scene” is now turning the spotlight more inward .

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In any case, it is obvious that more and more cases are trying to score points with a precise illumination of the emotional conflict of their protagonists – especially when it comes to the gray areas between perpetrators and victims, where it is particularly painful. Just a few weeks ago, for example, you could see how women in rows gave themselves up to violent criminals and murderers and sometimes committed crimes themselves, keyword hybristophilia. Only a short time later, the audience watched a stalker murder with nanobots, and the new “Tatort” from Berlin also deals with psychopaths, even if they look less spectacular at first glance: They are the ones from next door. Maybe that’s why the flick unfolds a whole lot more oomph – and goose bumps.

More than just popcorn cinema

In the film they even deny the death of their own daughter: the Baders.

(Photo: rbb / ARD Degeto / Aki Pfeiffer)

“Die Kalten und die Toten” is the psychogram of two very broken families who appear utterly normal on the outside: On the one hand, the Baders, who want to preserve the illusion of their wood-paneled Biedermeier (Alp) dream at all costs and with it their daughter Sophia Drift into a dangerous double life that ultimately pays for with death. On the other hand, cleverly interwoven with the story, the Zieglers: Their son is Sophia’s murderer and a terrifying example of what can happen when a child grows up without limits – and in the knowledge that there are no consequences for it, because At the end of the day, mom and dad always settle everything, even the matter of the bloody vodka bottle and the dead woman.

Of course, personality development is more complex than just parenting (or a lack of it), but that’s not the point of this “crime scene” either. Rather, it is more about lack of empathy and its consequences in general, because in this case these are the decisive points that bind both families together. In other words, the Zieglers’ son would not have had to be the perpetrator and Sophia would not have had to be a victim if the parents had shown their children real sympathy – and not above all looked at themselves and the preservation of the beautiful appearance.

“Sometimes you have to face the devil to be able to stand up to him,” says screenwriter Markus Busch, describing his approach. As in the other cases mentioned at the beginning, this is not always easy. But if you get through it to the end, you can actually learn something that goes beyond pure popcorn cinema. However, it is also clear that it shouldn’t or even have to be so intense every Sunday: If you only look inward, you run the risk of just looking at your navel at some point. But that is not to be feared anyway because of the diversity of the “crime scene” investigators, see Münster. And by then, the direction will be in the right place.

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