Millions Of Adults Believe They Could Commit ‘The Perfect Crime’

by : Julia Banim on : 19 Jul 2018 16:28
Benedict Cumberbatch playing Sherlock Holmes.Benedict Cumberbatch playing Sherlock Holmes.BBC

We are living in a golden age for crime on the telly box, whether that be through gritty docs like Making A Murderer or dark whodunnits like The Sinner.


We armchair detectives are no longer considered weirdos, and are now free to cheerfully tune into true crime podcasts on public transport and debate ‘The Owl Theory’ on Twitter long into the night.

As someone who loves mulling over a mystery, I am all about this slightly morbid renaissance. Especially when you see communities on the internet coming together to seek justice for murders left unsolved for decades.

Interestingly, the average adult now spends around four hours per week gripped by ‘whodunnit’ shows, with millions believing themselves to be capable of committing ‘the perfect crime.’ Crikey, should we be worried?

Columbo solves a crime.Columbo solves a crime.NBCUniversal Television Distribution

In a poll of 2,000 detective drama fans, almost one quarter believed they were so knowledgable of the errors made by criminals, they could easily get away scot-free with committing a crime of their own.

One in five fans felt they would know precisely who to befriend to stay out of the old knick if they were to commit an unlawful act.

Interestingly, 22 per cent of those polled thought they could select the ideal location to carry out their ‘perfect crime’ without being traced.

Over half felt they possess an eye for detail, which would stand them well in their career as a great detective. Over one third boasted of their acute observation and concentration abilities.

Forty-five per cent said they would apply logical thinking to catch the crook, with three in ten confident of their skills in considering various scenarios to uncover the truth.

A scene from True Detective.A scene from True Detective.HBO

This sleuth study was commissioned by FOX, to mark the launch of the fourth season of NCIS: New Orleans on 20 July at 9pm.

A FOX spokesperson said:


With crime dramas proving ever popular, it is not surprising that avid fans pick up key investigative techniques, allowing them to help solve the gritty and complex cases they revel in watching.

These are the true armchair detectives.

FOX UK fans already enjoy watching NCIS, one of the world’s most popular dramas, on the channel, and now we’re bringing them brand new episodes of NCIS: New Orleans.

Find out more about some of the world’s most notorious crimes below:

82 per cent of those polled had previously managed to solve a telly crime before the truth has been unveiled.

Furthermore, UK adults are so fascinated by crime shows, three in ten have even considered professions to follow their TV show detective dreams.

Almost 50 per cent have contemplated a career in forensic science while 36 per cent have looked into training to become a detective.

One quarter have thought about becoming a criminologist, with the same number seriously harbour ambitions to become a special agent like James Bond.

Discover whether you are indeed a mastermind detective with the following quiz:

So are you the next Hercule Poirot? Or simply an aristocratic gold digger fiddling nervously with your china tea cup under the Belgian detectives’s moustachioed stare?


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Julia Banim

Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.

Topics: News