What is it about someone’s possible untimely death that we can’t turn away from? What is it about a particular threatening event that summons a crowd? Some say the possibility of death is more exciting than any stunt, although people seldom admit it.
From the perspective of the one that puts their life on the line, is it thrill alone that motivates? Or the thrill of constantly keeping death away at arm’s length? Spectators are given a dose of exhilaration when they witness someone preserve their mortality.
Death’s attraction softly pulls at our mortal heart-strings.
Personal sympathy allows us to live through anyone near the moment of death. There’s no greater satisfaction than to walk along the cliff of life, and glance down from the heights of inevitable doom. When we see someone tip over the edge, we can’t help, but feel what they feel: shortness of breath, heart palpitations, sweat on forehead, sharpened visual acuity; it’s as if were walking the cliff along with them.
A sinister intent does exist for those that wish the worst for someone in a precarious situation. To them; the entertainment is death—not the denial of it. Some part of them yearns for blood to be spilled, not safely tucked away in an artery. All sorts of humanistic qualities cause this affinity for death:
Any disdain for humankind can be incubated into a grudge against life.
A loss of sympathy has the potential to strip someone of their comforting blanket that keeps them from growing jadedly cold. In the end; it’s the mystery of what happens when the threads of life are severed that keeps us instinctual invested in those that choose to stare death eye to eye.
The medium doesn’t matter: books, movies, video games, paintings—death’s message always ends the same way.
Death’s attraction lies in the core of our own mortality: we believe were impervious to the grave, but this is an illusion to preserve sanity. Death’s dance neglects no one; everyone will waltz beyond the veil of life.