Microkhan recently opined that it’s best to avoid serial killers who fancy themselves musicians. To our great consternation, alas, the teenage girls of West Java seem to be disregarding this sage advice. They have apparently gone somewhat ga-ga over Verry Idam Henyasyah, a.k.a. “Ryan,” a condemned murderer who’s become an object of myriad schoolgirl crushes.
In an all-white high school uniform, Eca, who refused to give her real name, said, “Initially, I just wanted to see what a person like Ryan would look like.” Asked about her first impression of Ryan, she replied, “He’s actually handsome. Too bad he’s a killer.”
“Not only is he handsome,” Eca, 16, added, “he’s also very nice. He doesn’t mind taking pictures with us. And he sings for us, too.” Eca proudly said that last week, she took a picture of herself beside Ryan in his cell, got his autograph and listened to him sing.
Three girls took pictures of Ryan using their cellphones. One of them whispered to her friend, “Ryan’s fine, don’t you think? He looks like [former President] Sukarno in what he’s wearing right now.” At the time, Ryan was sporting a long white shirt, black pants and a black peci, a fez-like Indonesian traditional hat.
One girl asked for Ryan’s autograph, as if he were an up-and-coming celebrity. A police officer jokingly told her, “Here, I’ll give you a piece of paper, and I’ll let you in to get his autograph. I dare you.” The girl smiled hesitantly, fear written over her face, and shyly gave the police a “No, thanks” look.
Others stood observing the prisoner quietly, seemingly enjoying the experience of being in close proximity to such an infamous man. “I’m just curious,” said one curly-haired girl.
At one point, a girl threw a balled-up piece of paper to Ryan, which he wrote on then returned to her. She said they were exchanging phone numbers. Initially, the girl said she had asked for the number merely as a keepsake. When Ryan was asked why he gave his number to her, he beamed and said, “Why don’t you just ask them?”
The girl then admitted that she planned to send text messages to Ryan, “to give him support and to ask him what he’s doing [while in the cell].”
“It gets dreary in my cell,” Ryan said. “Getting text messages from these girls keeps me entertained.”
Ryan’s 12-song album, tentatively titled Persembahan Terakhirku, is currently in the works. Perhaps one of its cuts will someday be regarded as the Indonesian version of Charles Manson’s “Cease to Exist”.
The real question here, of course, is why vile killers are so sexually alluring to some. One possibility: Certain personality types are hopelessly attracted to malignant narcissists, of which serial killers are the most extreme examples.