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Most Evil

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In the wild, a predator instinctively knows: eat or be eaten. For predator killers, murder is just as natural.

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Egocentric Killers
Ego Maniac killers think only of themselves, and thus commit egregious crimes without remorse. Truck driver Robert Rhoades raped and tortured hitchhikers in a specially designed chamber in the back of his cab.

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Attention Seekers
The attention-seeking killer commits crimes for the spotlight it incurs. George Russell boasted of his importance, ultimately killing the women whose attention he could never get.

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Deceptive Killers
Fantasy killers imagine every aspect of their crime in detail. Daniel Conahan lured men into the woods to torture them.

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Sexual Deviants
Sexual deviants are aroused by the act of murder. Gerard Shaefer was a trusted policeman who bound, raped and murdered his victims.

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Stone Cold Killers
A man stabs random strangers in New York, and another man kills at least 15 people.

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Rage Killers
Gerald Stano craves the company of women but lashes out.

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Control Killers
Control freaks seek to gain power through murder. Ronald Gene Simmons was a mass murderer who killed 16 people.

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Three master manipulators. Each committed acts of unspeakable evil...Taylor Helzer orchestrated brutal murders in the name of God. Sylvia White killed anyone she felt was in her way...including her four-year old stepson.

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A thrilling journey into the depths of the most diabolical minds, Most Evil, is a compelling series that aired on Investigation Discovery from 2006 to 2015. With a ground-breaking approach to understanding the dark psychology behind unfathomable acts of criminality, this unique documentary-style series delves into the question of what makes an individual evil.

Most Evil plunges viewers into the terrifying world of some of the most sinister criminals to have ever lived, dissecting their grisly deeds in a remarkably meticulous manner. Instead of merely documenting crimes, the show seeks to shine a light onto the driving forces and psychological machinations that push certain individuals into committing atrocities. As the audience watches, it is engaged in an exploration of evil across different plots and personalities, in a quest to demystify the hidden layers of criminal depravity.

At the core of the show is Dr. Michael Stone, a forensic psychiatrist and professor at Columbia University, who guides viewers through a chilling exploration of the darkest corners of the human psyche in the initial seasons. Dr. Stone's primary tool throughout the series is the 'Scale of Evil', which he developed, a scale from 1 to 22 rating different degrees of evil. This scale considers various factors, including the type and severity of the crime, potential psychological disorders, and the nature of the perpetrator’s motives.

The series takes on a variety of infamous criminals, ranging from fraudsters to serial killers, assigning a rating to each according to the Scale of Evil. Each episode typically focuses on one category of crime, and case studies are presented to illustrate different variations of 'evil'. While some may find these stories unsettling due to their graphic content, the series emphasizes the educational value, creating awareness about criminal behaviors and the psychological patterns that cause them.

This unique ranking system doesn’t just create a hierarchy of criminality — it also aids in differentiating and contextualizing not just the acts, but the perpetrators themselves. This provides a new and insightful angle to the viewers on understanding crime and criminal psychology, making Most Evil a well-loved show among true crime fans, criminologists, and psychologists.

In later seasons of the show, leading forensic psychologist Dr. Kris Mohandie, and British homicide detective, retired Detective Chief Inspector Colin Sutton, take on the role of chief detectives and analysts. Each episode introduces a new criminal, presenting a detailed account of their lives, their heinous acts, and the aftermath of their chilling atrocities. The expert analysis of the new hosts continues to provide an objective evaluation of each criminal's motive, mental status, and level of evil, making the show even more engaging.

Adding a heightened realism to the series, the experts often sit with direct sources like case detectives, family members of the victims, and occasionally, the criminals themselves. These first-hand accounts contribute to the depth of information offered to the viewers. With the expert commentary guiding them, viewers come to realize that evil is not just a product of criminal activity - it is a complex entanglement of factors like childhood, society, mental health, and choice.

Most Evil encapsulates the spectrum of wickedness in its unflinching examination of some of the world’s most abhorrent criminals. It adopts a rather clinical, scientific approach towards understanding the idea of evil, steering away from sensationalism and focusing on the real stories and the psychological portrait of culprits. It opens up the dialogue on the nature of evil, allowing audiences to grapple with uneasy questions about human behavior, morality, and justice.

As a result, Most Evil is not just an exploration of crimes and criminals, but an insightful examination of morality itself, investigating the murky territories of the human heart where evil originates. The series leaves viewers with a profound understanding of the complexity and capriciousness of evil, demonstrating that the most terrorizing monsters often hide in plain sight, disguised as ordinary people.

In summarizing the thematic premise of the show - crime is not committed in a vacuum. The sinister criminal behaviors documented stem from a range of extrinsic and intrinsic factors, and the series successfully breaks down these factors in each episode. For those seeking to understand the nuances of human psychology and the darkness that lurks within, most Evil offers a thought-provoking, if deeply unsettling, journey. History’s most notorious criminals are laid bare in a show that is as informative as it is horrifying.

Most Evil is a series categorized as a canceled. Spanning 3 seasons with a total of 51 episodes, the show debuted on 2006. The series has earned a mostly positive reviews from both critics and viewers. The IMDb score stands at 8.2.

Investigation Discovery
Michael Stone, Tim Hopper, Neil Dudgeon
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