PSYCHOLOGICALLY immature and nihilistic M. incapable of love with barely restrained urge to murder seeks F. for fun times and possible romantic relationship.

It’s not the kind of lonely hearts ad that’s likely to set a girl’s heart aflutter- unless of course the suitor happens to be Edward Cullen, the object of Bella Swan’s affections in Stephenie Meyer’s hugely popular Twilight series of books and films.

While Edward has both girls and women swooning, regular blokes are left wondering, “What’s he got that I haven’t?” Well, first up, he’s a psychopath.

The popularity of Edward owes less to his status as fantasy and more to the fact that he accurately reflects the real-life ‘bad boys’ women encounter in their daily lives.

That, at any rate, is the conclusion of Debra Merskin, associate professor for the school of journalism and communication at the University of Oregon. Writing in a recent issue of the Journal of Communication Inquiry, Merskin argues that Edward has all the hallmarks of a “compensated psychopath”.

Read the full article on the Sydney Morning Herald.


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