I already had a few asks about it so I decided to put together a list of the ultimate books on Ted Bundy. It’s a work in progress, and I might add more in the future!
The Only Living Witness : The true story of serial sex killer Ted Bundyby Stephen G. Michaud & Hugh Aynesworth
Michaud and Aynesworth are a reporter and an investigator team who interviewed serial killer Ted Bundy while he was on death row in Florida. This volume chronicles his activities throughout several states but is at its best in a long section of transcripts from the interview in which, while he never admits his quilt, Bundy offers vivid details of the crimes and commentary on the mindset of a serial killer.
The Stranger Beside Meby Ann Rule
The Stranger Beside Me is a 1980 autobiographical and biographical true crime book written by Ann Rule about the serial killer Ted Bundy, whom she knew personally before and after his arrest for a series of murders.
Note : It’s a good book but her perception of Ted is often off base. It’s better to be read with some distance as she perpetuated some fake myths like the long parted hair in the middle, but it’s overall a good read with an interesting point of view from someone who worked with him and hanged out socially a few times with him.
Ted Bundy : Conversations with a Killer, The Death Row Interviewsby Stephen G. Michaud & Hugh Aynesworth
Drawn from more than 150 hours of exclusive tape-recorded interviews with Bundy, this collection provides shocking insights into the killer’s 11th-hour confessions before his death in a Florida electric chair. A unique, horrifying self portrait of one of the most savage sex killers in history.
The Rivermanby Robert D. Keppel
After a search of over twenty years, one of America’s most elusive serial killers was finally apprehended. Now, read the true story of one man’s attempt to get inside the mind of the Green River Killer July 15, 1982: 3 woman’s strangled body was filed, caught on the pilings of Washington state’s Green River. Before long, the “Green River Killer” would be suspected in at least forty-nine more homicides, with no end in sight. Then the authorities received an unbelievable letter from the infamous serial killer Ted Bundy – then on Florida’s death row – offering to help catch the Green River Killer. But he would only talk to one man: Robert Keppel, the former homicide detective who had helped track Bundy’s cross-county killing spree. Now these conversations are revealed, in which Bundy speculates about the motive and methods of the Green River Killer – and reveals his own twisted secrets as well. Now, as never before, we look into the face of evil … and into the heart of a killer.
The Phantom Prince : My Life with Ted Bundyby Elizabeth Kendall
One of my personal favorite, it’s a kind of autobiography written by Elizabeth Kloepfer about her 7 years relationship with Ted. It gives the best insight on how he acted around someone close to him and on his every day life. It’s a must read!
Defending the Devil : My story as Ted Bundy’s last lawyerby Polly Nelson
As a brand-new lawyer, Polly Nelson was offered serial-killer Ted Bundy’s case as a pro bono project for her prestigious Washington, DC law firm just weeks before he was scheduled to be executed. Defending the Devil is a unique and candid look at the Bundy case and at Nelson’s three-year personal battle to balance her duties as a lawyer, her compassion for human life, and the inhuman crimes her client had committed.
Through the obstacles and setbacks faced by Nelson there was Ted Bundy himself. While his crimes show the extremely violent side of his personality, there were many other sides –many other extreme sides–that the public never saw. Ranging from shy and defensive to a narcissistic performer, Bundy professed his innocence by day while offering confessions to the police and helping the FBI at night. His own worst enemy, Bundy seemed never to understand the severity of his crimes, the punishment, or the public’s reaction to them. Through it all stood Nelson, defending him from both the system and himself.
I’m Not Guilty : The Case of Ted Bundyby Al Carlisle Ph.D.
Dr. Al Carlisle evaluated Bundy for the Utah court when he was first arrested in 1975 and conducted extensive interviews with him after that. Carlisle has painstakingly reconstructed the life of Ted Bundy through conversations with his friends, family, neighbors, lovers, investigators, and surviving victims—and with the killer himself. I’M NOT GUILTY finally answers the questions about Bundy’s own crimes through a fictional dialogue between Carlisle and Bundy on the day before his execution, and sheds light on the development of the violent mind.
The Bundy Murders : A Comprehensive Historyby Kevin Sullivan
Theodore Bundy was one of the more infamous, and flamboyant, American serial killers on record, and his story is a complex mix of psychopathology, criminal investigation, and the U.S. legal system. This in-depth examination of Bundy’s life and his killing spree that totaled dozens of victims is drawn from legal transcripts, correspondence and interviews with detectives and prosecutors. Using these sources, new information on several murders is unveiled. The biography follows Bundy from his broken family background to his execution in the electric chair.
The Trail of Ted Bundy : Digging up the untold storiesby Kevin Sullivan
Within the pages of The Trail of Ted Bundy : Digging Up the Untold Stories, you’ll hear the voices - many for the first time - of some of Ted Bundy’s friends, as they bring to light the secrets of what is was like to know him while he was actively involved in murder. The stories of his victims are here as well, as told by their friends, including the information and anecdotes that didn’t make it into the investigative files and are being published here for the first time. Two of the former detectives who worked with author Kevin Sullivan during the writing of his widely-acclaimed book, The Bundy Murders, return to aid readers in fully understanding Bundy’s murderous career; it’s ripple-effect impact on those who came into contact with him in one way or another, and dispelling commonly held myths.
The Trail of Ted Bundy is a journey back in time, to when Ted Bundy was killing young woman and girls in the Pacific Northwest and beyond. It’s told by those who knew him, and you’ll hear their revealing stories, many being voiced and put to print for the very first time. The friends of the victims are here as well, and they too share their insights about the victims, and some of what they tell here had been held back from the investigators, such was their commitment to their deceased friends. It’s also the story of those who hunted Bundy; those who guarded him, and those who otherwise were a part of this strange case one way or another.
The Bundy Secrets : Hidden Files on America’s Worst Serial Killerby Kevin Sullivan
Within the pages of The Bundy Secrets : Hidden Files Of America’s Worst Serial Killer is a unique, never-before-published look at the investigations undertaken to stop the depredations of America’s most infamous serial killer, Ted Bundy. Presented here in an easy-to-follow chronology are the raw, unedited and most fascinating official case files as they appeared to the detectives from the Pacific Northwest to the Rocky Mountains to Florida.
Ted Bundy : A Visual Timelineby Rob Dielenberg
Ted Bundy was, and still is, an enigma. This book goes part way towards dismantling some of the mythos that has been built up around him over the 40 years since he first came to light. It does this by presenting – in chronological order – all the important available information on Ted gleaned from books, archives, TV, film, newspaper articles, essays, police reports, court transcripts, and original sources, so that readers can make up their own minds. If you are a student of abnormal psychology and/or criminology you will find this book an invaluable resource in answering most, if not all, the questions you ever wanted to ask about Ted. This book may not be the last word on him, but it is without doubt the most exhaustively researched to date.
In Defense of Denial: Ted Bundy’s Final Prison Interview 1989
In 1989, shortly before his execution, Ted Bundy met with Robert Keppel in what would be his final confession to the events that had occurred some years prior in Washington State. Although much of this confession has been published in other forms and through various media outlets, this is the original version of that confession as provided by an FOIA request made in June of 2015. It contains more of the interview than has been discussed over the years. It was released in transcribed form by the King County Sheriff Office.
Reflections on Green River : The letters of, and conversations with Ted Bundy, edited and compiled by Sara
“Reflections on Green River” contains a collection of original letters written by Ted Bundy to the Green River Task Force in 1984. It also contains the original transcriptions of the recorded interview with Ted in 1984 and in 1988. In 1984 the interview centered on Ted Bundy’s evaluation of the Green River killings but it also discussed a suspect in the case as well and went into detail about the dump sites and Ted’s intuition that the Green River killer was moving up and down I-5 corridor possibly more than police were aware of. Bundy also analyzed the disappearances of the women associated to the Green River Killer and those that he felt could be associated. The 1988 interview centers around Ted’s evaluation of questionnaires related to crime being developed in Washington State as well as discussions related to serial killing. These interviews and letters were talked of in some measure in other books but this collection is more complete than most other sources. It is a very important text for those researching the Bundy era.
During his time in jail, Ted Bundy was allowed to spend time in the library to study for his court date. Accompanied by a guard, Bundy would read up on law in the hope of learning tactics that he could use while acting as his own lawyer. However, his efforts were futile as he ultimately lost the trial.
So I was talking to my friend about something and I wanted to post a thought about it. I’ve wanted to talk about for a while–The Lorax.
Ha ha, you wish. Try again.
Yeah, there it is…everyone’s little hypocritical marketing whore. There’s nothing I can say here that hasn’t already been said when it comes to the actual content of the movie and Illumination’s unreasonable treatment of the character. A quality and inspiring story taken and reduced to all the substance of a wet piece of paper, Illumination sold out an environmentalist character to Mazda (and 70 other companies), it shifts blame, etc.
But as some of you may have noticed, there are a lot of signs that this mess of a film is something put together from an entirely darker script that took its story more seriously. There is no pre-production script available to prove this, only the script that ended up as the movie in the end. However, the proof lies in the storyboards and soundtracks. Specifically two songs, Thneedville (Original Demo) and Biggering. But within these two songs are clues to a different story than what we ended up having to suffer.
So let’s start with the wide eyed Zac Efron fuck up himself, Ted Wiggins (almost insultingly named after Dr. Seuss’s birth name, Theodore Giesel).
Probably the biggest hint of a major script change is in the original demo version of the opening song, Thneedville. In it, a huge portion that was cut out of the final version of the song is revealed–specifically a solo given to Ted. In it he gushes over a newly released toy called a Whosit and how its everything he’s ever wanted….aside from all the other extravagant things he has wanted, including but not limited to a sports car and a robotic twin of himself. In the proceeding lyrics he wails over the happy tune about how desperately he wants it, needs it, that ‘all he’s ever wanted is the stuff that he doesn’t have’.
From this its pretty easy to figure out that in this missing pre-script, Ted’s character was not trying to impress Taylor Swift (yeah, I know the character has a name, I just don’t care). In fact, its entirely possible that Taylor Swift’s character might have not been in the original script at all, since her only real role in the final movie was to be the motivator to Ted’s actions. But here it seems Ted’s motivation is his role as the consumer–he WANTS things, he wants it all, he’s not satisfied with anything. I’ve heard rumors that his original goal was that he wanted the tree just so he could HAVE it and be the only one who had it. I have no confirmation on this but it seems about right.
So, to put it simply, the bland as dishwater protagonist of the Illumination movie was meant to serve the purpose of rounding off the Trinity: the defender, the corporation, and the consumer. Within the original book there was very little sympathy, if any at all, for the issues a corporation can have. The television special improved on this, pointing out that there is no answer as simple as ‘just stop it’ because corporation of course employ people and provide products. But something that never has been properly addressed has been the role of the consumer in all of this. What fuels the corporation is the ‘need’ from the consumer and in thus the consumer has a role in the issue of corporations and environmentalism. While the Once-ler may be the dealer of the drug, it is the choice of the consumer whether or not to turn the other way and ignore the consequences behind the product they purchase. In this the consumer is just as responsible for this cycle as the corporation.
This, to me, would’ve justified the creation of the new Lorax movie because it would’ve addressed something that the book and television special had failed to fully address. Yes, its a little weird that the Once-ler has a face despite purposely being kept out of view in the previous iterations but the true failing of the final movie is that it doesn’t truly add anything to the source material and in fact very well may take away from it. Pretty boy Once-ler is just a weird choice, not the true failing of the film.
Speaking of, why don’t we talk about how Once-ler adds into this.
I’m not sure at what point that his song was changed from Biggering to How Bad Can I Be (though you’ll notice many of the lines in the latter are just repurposed from the former), but the fact remains that it is another refugee of the original plot. In this, its noticeable that it fits in better with the original song as well. Biggering and the original Thneedville seem to draw a bit of an interesting parallel between the Once-ler character and the Ted Wiggins character that was inexplicably dropped from the film: the parallel of greed and pride.
The original lines talk about how the Once-ler wants to ‘bigger’ everything. He wants a bigger office, a bigger chair, a bigger staff, a bigger hat, and that all this biggering is ‘triggering more biggering’. Basically, he wants stuff because it’ll make him look better to everyone. More and more stuff. He will never be satisfied no matter how much he has similar to how in the original Thneedville song, Ted only wants everything that he doesn’t have and is jealous that anyone else has anything. This shows that the original intention was not just for the Once-ler to tell Ted about what happened in the past, but to curb Ted from spiraling down like he did. To keep Ted from ‘Biggering’.
As far as the final script is concerned, there is very little that can be said for the ‘expanded’ protagonist other than Ted is so underdeveloped that you’ll probably forget that he’s there. It has been often pointed out that the Illumination film makes the problem too black and white, framing a ‘good’ side and a ‘bad’ side with the good side being the audience proxy therefore failing to teach people that this kind of indulgence could happen to them just as easily as anyone else. Ironically it seems that this major flaw might have been the POINT in the original script, with the consumer (Ted) being cast as the one who has to choose between his lavish behavior and the sacrifices that have to be made.
I’m not really sure what was responsible for these changes, perhaps Illumination Animation not wanting to make people feel bad about themselves, but it definitely happened and it ultimately hurt the film. Ted as a parallel for the Once-ler makes the film more viable because it inevitably presents the question that the book always begged to all of us.
“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing’s going to get better. It’s not.”
What are your thoughts on Archieronnie / Archie has a character in general (Because a lot of fellow Bughead's have different opinions on Archie)
Alright this is kind of a two-parter so let’s start with my opinion on Archie
Here’s the thing: Archie gets a lot of crap from the Riverdale fandom. And honestly? I’ve definitely made a joke or two at his expense. I think the reason people don’t like Archie is because, compared to the other characters, he seems the most immature. He appears to have the least amount of issues of the core four, so his story line seems the most trivial. But here’s the thing we as a fandom really needs to remember - Archie is a teenager. If anything, his story line is simply the most realistic to teenage boys. They don’t know what they want, they lash out at their parents, they date a bunch of girls, they drink a bit too much at parties, and they can be incredibly selfish. That’s who teenage boys are. Besides, while it may seem lesser to the other story lines, Archie is going through some pretty heavy stuff. His parents are getting divorced, and let us not forget that he had an illegal sexual relationship with a teacher. That’s enough to cause any normal teenager to spiral. You throw that on top of the murder of a boy who is eerily similar to you, and you’d probably act like Archie too
Tl:dr; I think Archie can be a bit annoying, but I think it’s just true to his character. Do I think he could stand to grow up a bit? Sure. But I’m also pretty sure he gets a lot more crap than he deserves.
And now for my opinion on Archieronnie/Varchie
I would definitely love for these two to be endgame, because I’m basic like that. And, as of right now, I think that’s the writers’ goal. However, I definitely don’t think they’ll have a happy ending anytime soon. The optimist in me is hoping that Bughead will stay (relatively) stable throughout the series (think Marchall/Lily from HIMYM), while Archie and Veronica continue to dance around each other and date other people (Ted/Robin). Ultimately, they’ll come together, and they’ll even come together for short periods of time throughout, but as of right now, they’re both turning to each other for the wrong reasons: to have a relationship, any relationship, that allows them to escape the troubles of their lives. Think about Archie, going from Grundy to Valerie to Cheryl to Veronica. He just wants someone, anyone to love him. And Veronica came to Archie on one of the toughest nights of her life. I think they both have a lot of personal growth to get through before they can truly be in a happy, stable relationship, and that’s going to take time.
Tl:dr; I hope Archieronnie/Varchie is endgame, but as of this moment I don’t think they’re right for each other. I have a feeling they’ll be very on again/off again
Lol I’m sure that was a longer answer than you were asking for, but once you get me going I just can’t stop! Thanks for asking!
with social media the audience is having a much louder voice concerning the media they consume and the producers of those media cant not escape their voice but how much influence do you think they should have in the story.
I have a one word answer to this, but giving just that feels overly simplistic and partially inaccurate, so bear with me.
One of the most interesting debacles in recent television history is the ending of How I Met Your Mother, a show I don’t watch, but know enough about thanks to the controversy. It ran from 2005 to 2014, also known as too goddamn long, and while generally a hangout comedy descended from Friends, had one basic concept: Boy Meets Girl, but Who is the Girl?
When this show began, it established one romance: Ted was in love with Robin. Robin however had different goals from Ted, and in a shocking twist, was revealed as Aunt Robin at the end of the series premiere. Which, duh. You need something to complicate the audience’s expectations that Boy and Girl will get together in the end. Otherwise there’s no drama. Nothing like the future telling us NOPE to get a bit of that in, and given a short run, this would be nothing but fun. A challenge to the audience members who are crafty enough to know it for what it is, and an obstacle for those who just want in on the ride.
Except the obvious: It was not a short run. It was, again, too goddamn long. Interest in Ted/Robin waned. Adoration of Barney/Robin thrived, to the point where the show in its final year structured its entire season around the event of their wedding. While there were still some holdout fans of the original endgame couple, generally most fans bought what the show appeared to be selling: That ultimately Ted outgrew his affection for someone who actually wasn’t particularly right for him, and they both found better matches. Which is why millions of viewers and hundreds of thinkpieces have since ranted at length over the show’s ending, which decided to stick to the plan they had all along: Ted and Robin forever, haters and literally everything they set up to the contrary to the left.
There are arguments out there for how viewers misunderstood the point of the show. Some point to a fixation on the mother, when the show was always about Ted. Others, to the show’s own words about how no matter how many women he encountered he returned plenty of times to Robin. But that’s just the thing. Did viewers misunderstand their intentions? Absolutely.
Was the involved staff responsible for not responding to that misunderstanding by course-correcting the writing? I think also yes, absolutely. Again: The entire last season is essentially about Barney and Robin’s wedding. They have obstacles–they overcome them. Throw in a lot of care and attention put into making the audience care about the actual titular mother, and I don’t think it’s a question that the writers failed to do right by their audience.
You can’t please every fan. You can’t make things 100% clear to every fan. But there’s a huge difference between 1% of the audience being wrong and 99% of the audience being wrong, and in their case, it’s clear which one it was.
Which is where it gets complicated though. I strongly believe in the above. Enough that I even tried to sit through the series finale. I just don’t think that’s the same as influence–and in terms of influence,I actually think the answer is the audience should have none.
Now, should there be feedback? Yes. Concrit is an incredibly important part of the creative process, particularly when it comes to TV. In a book, you could say it begins and ends with the written word, that one can work to make ambiguous elements clearer but that there’s not a lot of room for the story to escape the writer’s intentions. In TV though, there are practically infinite ways. Direction, cinematography, performance–all of these things can alter the original scripted intention, and sometimes, it’s a lot easier to consider the reaction than it is to regain objectivity and see what actually came out of the final product.
Example: Bryan Fuller has gone on record as saying that Will and Hannibal’s relationship was a response to what had developed beyond his original desires. If you watch the show, honestly, you can see this. There is a clear shift that I’d put at around mid-season 2 where they begin to play a little more with the energy, and then by 3, it’s just one long romance as they commit. Ultimately, however, that was his call to make. He was not siding with anyone when he did this, and if–God willing–the show continues, I suspect a lot of people will be disappointed with how the relationship plays out from there, if they felt he was. All Fuller did is listen. He considered what the actual story was saying beyond what he had meant it to say, and he found he agreed with the reaction–with the idea that the reaction was speaking to a true thing. He could have also disagreed, and course-corrected, and that would honestly also be fine and respectful–so long as he actually did course-correct, so as to not promise something he did not mean to give.
Again: You can’t please every fan, and rarely are the numbers as simple as 99% and 1%. Different social media sites often have different majority voices, and even within fandom/Tumblr, you can have clear dissent. Everyone has an opinion and thinks they have a good reason for it. Everyone thinks, due to the nature of the internet and the human mind and a slew of factors (confirmation bias, echo chambers, et cetera) that their opinion is backed up by others. Picking from that when one actually sees the full range of thoughts is impossible, and even if one could pick, who’s to say if it’s right? Fans think wrong things all the time.
ALL THE TIME.
ALL. THE. TIME.
So, in my opinion, the healthiest response any fan can have with content is to believe it closed and immutable. To believe that they can speculate and theorize and critique as necessary, but not expect their voice to be reflected within the content. Partially because actually I’d like to think this would inspire more change, not less. It’s hard to imagine a show continuing to queerbait, for example, if no one keeps watching it. If there’s no hoping they can change the staff’s minds with write in campaigns and tweeting and, essentially, free publicity that is perceived to have weight because of the investment involved, but which is being freely given and thus does not need to be rewarded. Because as you say: social media has immeasurably changed the conversation between creator and consumer. But it does not necessarily change the power dynamic. The voice of the consumer is always escapable–it’s called the back button. It’s called block and mute. Hell, some people like Jeremy Carver don’t have a social media presence period–they’re not hearing anything unless they actively seek it out.
In the end, a voice is only as good as the ear listening to it. It’s the rest of the body that can move and act and really make itself known.
what she means:
honestly the ending to how i met your mother is the biggest disappointment in TV show history i mean seriously the mom was in it for like .3 episodes and by making robin the one ted ultimately ends up with means that the entire show was about ted's quest to end up with her and not even about how he met the mother like why didn't they just call the show "how i met robin and dated her for a while and then broke up like eight times and then found your mom but then when she passed away i realized i still really wanted to bang your aunt robin so here i am at her doorstep 20 years later just like i was at the very beginning of the fucking show"