John Mark Karr: Why won't he and Joran van der Sloot just go away?
Last week, we told you about allegations that JonBenét Ramsey false confessor John Mark Karr, who's reportedly undergone a sex change and now goes by Alexis Valoran Reich, is trying to create a cult of JonBenét lookalikes he's calling "The Immaculates."
This week, the mainstream media picked up the story just as news that Joran van der Sloot, a onetime suspect in the Natalee Holloway slaying, is under scrutiny for another murder. The timing makes one New York magazine writer wonder why on earth we still care about such scum.
In "Are Joran van der Sloot and John Mark Karr Really Back in Our Lives?," Chris Rovzar, who also refers to himself as "Intel Chris," begins like so:
Here is something we will never understand: Why Americans fetishize some white-people murder stories and not others. The investigations surrounding JonBenét Ramsey's death and Natalee Holloway's disappearance were bizarre, to be sure, but no more chilling than many of the stories we read in the New York tabloids every day. Yet somehow, when the Greta Van Susteren/Nancy Grace/National Enquirer Axis of Weasel gets on the case, these stories are blown into National Mysteries. They go from headlines used for Law & Order to ones used on Lifetime Original Movies. And the worst part is: They won't end.
Why not? Rovzar's best guess involves the link between quasi-reality, as portrayed by television shows, and actual events that somehow seem less real due to the way they're handled on cable news:
At this point, it's as though through obsession with these stories we are creating the same kind of invincible-feeling, serial attention-seekers that we do with reality stars who continue to appear on show after show and perform stunt after stunt. Were you the best character in your last murder investigation? People are going to love you in this new one! But you're really going to have to step up your game this time around.
At least there's an upside related to Karr, though: Rovzar thinks "Alexis Valoran Reich sounds like an awesome, terrifying costume" for this next Halloween.
Of course, if Karr hasn't faded into the background by October, the results will be more terrifying than awesome.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Westword's biggest stories.
- Ten Great Colorado Ways for Families to Celebrate October and Halloween
Sat., Oct. 10, 5:00pm
Sat., Oct. 10, 7:00pm
Sat., Oct. 10, 7:05pm
Sun., Oct. 11, 12:00pm
- Aurora Public Schools Report: Failing Grades in Grad Rates, Test Scores
- Video: Was Jimmy Fallon Mean to 8-Year-Old Littleton Inventor Andrew Burton?