The Arkham Sessions Podcast, Episode #105: “Torch Song”

It starts out pretty harmless. A minor dispute between a sassy pop star named Cassidy and one of her stage pyrotechnicians. His name is Garfield Lynns, and Garfield seems pretty burnt by Cassidy’s rejection. She makes it clear that they are no longer a romantic couple, but his comments about her skimpy outfit begin to raise red flags. We begin to see overt signs of his anger, resentment, and feelings of control over Cassidy. Garfield transforms into the pyromaniac villain, Firefly. What follows is a disturbing series of predatory, stalking behavior that nearly ends Cassidy’s career– and life altogether.

In this episode of The Arkham Sessions podcast, we explore the development of stalking behavior through Cassidy’s narrative. First, we consider the “types” of stalkers. For instance, “Rejected Stalkers” are motivated by revenge and their desire for reconciliation with former romantic partners. They often know the person they are targeting. “Intimacy-seeking Stalkers” simply pursue their victim in order to gratify their highly romanticized and infatuated beliefs about being with them. “Resentful Stalkers” have the sole motivation of frightening and distressing their target, and may not even know them personally.  Finally, we describe concrete factors that increase the risk of stalking violence, such as when the perpetrator has a previous criminal record, leaves notes, and has a history of untreated mental health and substance use disorders. Listen below for the full analysis!

The Arkham Sessions is a podcast dedicated to the psychology of the show, Batman: The Animated Series. Have psychology related questions about Batman? Write to us via twitter @ArkhamSessions or on Facebook.

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