Clearly, controversy surrounding violence in the media is not a new phenomenon, born in the past few decades but an old dog playing new tricks. The more brutal the stories become and the more graphic the special effects, the more people want to blame film's more macabre moments for instigating horrific actions in reality. The "the movies did it" defense has become an easy fall back for out-of-control, non-fictional villains responding to carefully contrived, fictional worlds.
Ted Bundy was also clever enough to blame pornography for his disturbing, sexually charged murders, and in this instance the public equally jumped on the band wagon. The scapegoat of dangerous images became a convenient way to explain away the psychological conundrum of our species and equally gave us an agenda to, in a sense, kill the messenger to ease our fears, those which in this case we specifically hold against our neighbors. Bundy was just toying with us of course, and his claims offered no real resolutions. However is making the intangible world of, for our purposes, cinema an antagonist in our endlessly chaotic world like blaming the inventor of the hammer for the person who uses it to bludgeon instead of build? The narrow line between artistic interpretation and skewed and repackaged media dramatization wherein we are hypnotized by dirty pictures and salacious advertisements to feed our sado-masochistic tendencies. In America, the Lizzie Borden case is often identified as the source of the strange gluttonous love affair between media and audience. Over 110 years after Lizzie was declared "not guilty," television viewing audiences held their breath watching the OJ Simpson trial.
*** Update: Indiana teen Andrew Conley was arrested for the murder of his 10-year-old brother in November of 2009. He was an alleged "huge Dexter fan," and many are blaming the show's violence for his horrendous acts.