Sometimes on the way to your dream,

you get lost and find a better one.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

the dramatic scream

I'm watching episodes of one of my favourite TV series, Castle.
I'm having a Castlefest.
In every episode, someone, often female, finds a dead, murdered, body. In most episodes, the finder sees the body and lets out a dramatic scream.
I've noticed this in other crime shows too.
Always a dramatic scream.

Doesn't anyone ever get shocked into silence and stumble away?
Run away? Faint?
You know, before they call the police. 

I think if I stumbled upon a dead, murdered, body I'd be shocked speechless, there's no way I could scream, dramatically or any other way.

If I saw a body in the distance and not know what it was, I'd maybe get a little closer, to see what the heck that thing lying in the road-field-room is, like some of these finders do, but that would give me time to adjust to what I was seeing, there'd be no need for a sudden dramatic scream.
I'd still be shocked into silence perhaps.
And possibly cry. 

Ever notice that when men find a dead body there's no dramatic scream?


  1. I've noticed that, & I've also noticed that they can always find a parking space in front of whatever building they need to go to!!

  2. I'm with you on the screaming issue. It seems unlikely that the the discoverer would do more than phone the police and feel very sorry for the body's owner. Perhaps screaming was something people once did out of politeness that became a theatrical cliche.

  3. You are very right. And by the same token if I damage myself in such a way that it really hurts I don't swear. I just suck in my breath. And only women faint as well if television is to be believed.

  4. I remember screaming when my second child was born upside down and backwards. Only until some nurse shoved a washcloth in my mouth, and never since.

  5. Quite different to say opening a wardrobe and a dead body falls out. I think I would scream at that.

  6. fishducky; yes! the always available parking space. and never needing a toilet.

    Geo; possibly it has theatrical roots, where people in the back rows of a drama house needed to know the actors on stage had found the body. I hadn't considered that. It seems a little redundant for movies and TV though.

    Elephant's Child; I do the breath suck in too, the swearing comes later. I have seen a man faint on TV once or twice, usually it's written in as fainting at the sight of blood, for instance Doc Martin, a TV show here, where a well respected surgeon had to leave his practice and become a country GP because he couldn't handle the sight of blood anymore. But on all those popular crime shows, the men never faint. I think they should once in a while.

    Joanne; I'd scream at that too and I'd be spitting out the washcloth! What an awful thing to do. Things were so different back then...

    Andrew; yes, that is a lot different, there's a surprise shock value in that where a scream would be more likely, but an instant scream, quickly over, or possibly a running away screaming, not the sight-register-scream for effect that goes on. And notice only the women do the screaming while the men appear to take such discoveries in their stride.

  7. What better way to deal with a heatwave, than watch favourite TV shows. Helps to take one's mind off it.
    We're a few degrees lower than SA (just), and am hoping you're faring well, as best as possible :)

    I could tell a tale or two about coming across a blood covered non-moving body (more than once). And, I didn't let out a scream. Rather more an expletive, then concern, then cautious approach to examine and find out if the person was still alive.

    A high pitched woman's scream evokes (probably) a primal alert or fear in people. So, it makes for great telly :)

  8. I don't think I would scream. When I'm shocked by something that's happening around me or something I've seen, I go into shocked silence, stumble away and then become almost alarmingly logical and methodical until the shock wears off. I imagine (though hope I never find out!) finding a dead body would be much the same.

  9. I am not one to scream at anything...too dang calm for my own good.

    Oh-how-I-love-Castle/Nathan Fillion!

  10. I just hope I'm never in a position to find out for sure what I would do.

  11. I don't think I would scream either, but I don't know because I've never stumbled up a dead body.

  12. Funny you should say that...
    I'd have thought the scream well over used but.. the other day I took Max (my big dog) to the vet for his yearly shots. He walked straight in and nuzzled the arm of a middle aged woman just inside the door, she hadn't seen us come in and his 'Pat Me' nudge startled her...and she screamed! (I thought it bit over used then too)

  13. Vicki; favourite TV shows help a lot with winter cold too. Wrap up in a quilt, park yourself on the couch with remote in hand and while away the hours. You've come across dead bodies? Human?

    Cassandra; I like to think I'd be logical and methodical too, more likely I'd run for the nearest phone booth or dial the emergency number on my mobile. I wouldn't touch, or even get close enough I don't think. I watch crime shows and those bodies have a way of jumping up, grabbing you and running off into the bushes....

    Susan Kane; another Castle/Nathan fan! I love Kate Beckett/ Stana Katic too.

    Delores; me too.

    Manzanita; if you do, let us know how that goes okay?

  14. I think the scream is a learned behaviour that one has come to associate with little girls. My daughter never did it, but I remember that a lot of the girls she knew did the whole "damsel in distress" squealing thing whenever confronted by anything out of the ordinary - a spider, a sudden noise etc. And I won't go into their ear piercing noise on the rides at the Royal Show.

    You'd think they would outgrow it, but sadly a lot of grown women do it as well (eg when a friend shows them her engagement ring, announces she is pregnant or has scored tickets to some posh event), sounding like a pod of migrating dolphins. I often wonder if it's a bonding/pack mentality thing. I despise it, so that may explain why most of my friends are male :-)

    I'm pretty sure that I wouldn't scream if I found a body. I'd be shocked for sure, but mostly silent while I worked out what to do. I did find an elderly woman on a Sunday morning last year, who was lying in the snow on a trail out in the woods. I thought she was dead at first, but she was barely alive and very cold. I took off my parka and wrapped her in it while I rang the police. No screaming.

    It turned out that she had dementia and had wandered away from the old folks home through a fire escape sometime on Saturday afternoon. The poor woman was only lightly dressed, was wearing slippers on her feet and yet she'd managed to come about 5 km from the home. They think she was heading to her childhood home. It was well below zero and had snowed overnight, so she was lucky to be alive. If it wasn't for the dog who dragged me "off piste" I'd never have found her. She recovered from her ordeal, so that was good.

    Since then, we've joined a group called "Missing People" and they send out an SMS when they need help to look for someone missing. It seems that Sophie is quite good at finding people, even though she looks like a prissy little lap dog. People laughed the first time we turned up with her as most of them had "real dogs", but Sophie outsniffed them all :-)

  15. kymbo; that's definitely a surprised scream, not a staged "traumatised" scream.

    Marie; I don't recall any of the little girls I knew doing the excitement scream, but I've certainly heard it a lot on TV from older young women, like you said over something special like an engagement ring, invites to "the" party, that sort of thing. Not in real life though. Perhaps I don't get out enough.
    I think joining the Missing people group is a great thing to do, elderly people wandering away in the cold and snow is a sobering thought. I'm glad you found that first woman and cared for her until help came.

  16. We once lived near a park that had a set of shops and a bar adjacent to it. One morning, hubby and I found a guy lying alongside a house fence, with blood in his blonde/brown hair, lying very still.
    There were no screams, from either of us, but it did take a few seconds to process such an unusual occurrence, as we'd walked the park for months without event.
    We called repeatedly to him as we approached, with no response, and were concerned that he was dead.
    It was only when we gently tried to turn him did he wake - got up, blood over his face, verbally abused us and stumbled away.
    He had either been in a fight, or had hit his head after one too many.

    I worked in a nursing home years ago, and was no stranger to death - although one incident was unexpected and shocking.

    When I was a child, I came home from a friend's place to find my mother had been stabbed. She was covered in her own blood and was very close to death.
    She survived the ambulance trip to hospital.
    As the only child of alcoholic parents, I could tell you some real-life tales that would make your hair stand on end - probably why mine turned grey so early.

  17. Goodness me, Vicki! That's a lot of drama! Eek!

    I have never come across a dead body that wasn't pronounced so by someone prior to me getting there. My Grandma was the last dead person I saw. She had been in a nursing home, and it was her birthday, and someone sent her a bunch of flowers (she loved flowers and plants). She said, "Oh, how lovely," and then promptly died. When I saw her she had her mouth open and looked strange. So the lovely symmetry of dying on the day she was born was somewhat depleted by her mouth hanging open, but I guess you can't choose these sorts of things, right? :)

    My auntie was shaded a most bizarre shade of morgue foundation. I guess there's probably not really any colours they can use on corpses that ain't gonna be weird, right? :)

    I really need to go to bed ...

  18. River, I reserve the right to dramatically scream and swear if a body or spider drops on me. If it's my ex then I'll just walk right on over his cold stiff corpse.

  19. I go along with Delores - I'm not too keen to find out either.

  20. Vicki; finding your mother would be the worst of those dramas for sure, so glad she survived, even more glad you got home in time.
    We heard fighting outside our house after midnight about 15 years ago now, and went out to find an unconscious young man in the front corner of our yard. We called the police, but he woke up and disappeared while we were doing that.

    Sue; I agree, Vicki has had a lot of drama.
    I've only ever seen two dead bodies, my parents, both in coffins at the funeral homes. They looked so much smaller than when alive.

    JahTeh; if a body dropped on me unexpectedly I'd probably scream too, sort of an "aaaah!! quickly as I jumped away. Ex husband? If he was in my house, dead or alive, I'd be checking my wallet and money box immediately, before nudging him outside with my heavy boots on.

    Molly; I'm not wanting to find dead bodies, but if I did, I'd hope I was more sensible than to stand there letting out an operatic scream.

  21. Oh my god, this is my PET HATE in movies and TV, that it's always the woman who screams or cries. I would LOVE, just ONCE, to see the man whimper, cry or scream instead. Just once!