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The following text is a paradox. With facts on a fictional personality. It's an invalidated analysis of the human psyche, written for momentary personal amusement, cynicism and with pseudopsychological sadistic intentions to provoke thought, humor, awareness, frustration, irritation, self analysis and confusion. While the stated facts can be interpreted as consistent, if any knowledge on the subjects touched is possessed, this is in no way a professional opinion. In other words, what you are about to venture in, is as official and insightful as it is also nothing but bullshit, as most psychoanalytical texts are. My advice? Simply, enjoy.

Due that I have recently become aware of how lot of people, females mainly, overlook the fact that Tate IS a psychopath. He burned Larry in an act of rage, which is one of the FEW things psychopaths can actually feel. He killed those kids during the shooting giving him the Mass Murderer badge, lacking any agreeable motive. He's absolutely egocentric, with a false sense of entitlement which, manipulatively, allows him to present himself as the victim every time he has the chance (how many times has he brought up the abandonment card?) Psychopaths will also lie with extreme easiness and are incredibly great at it; Tate is smart, charming and charismatic. He knows just the right thing to say, when to say it, to who and how. He knows this because he know what people, including Violet, want to hear (again, manipulative), which he will do if he finds the need to. Those aforementioned "virtues", otherwise weapons, help him with gaining people's trust, friendship, even love. Of course, he'd used them later for his benefit rather than really caring for them.

Love. No, Tate Langdon is NOT in love. That's an impossibility. He likes Violet, yes. Finds her to be "like him", a misfit of the norm. She's intelligent, good natured, potentially strong, caring, loving, accepting and attracted "to the darkness", thus making her the perfect prototype for Tate. Regardless, he does not love her. Violet is his objective, his goal. Psychopaths who come to find one, as perfect as Tate has, they will never let go of it. They will stop at nothing to obtain what they want (a recall to the false sense of entitlement and egocentricity traits.) Tate's shown that type of obsessive, sickeningly amoral determination various times. Reason why I find it absolutely absurd when people see it as "cute" or "romantic" when it's simply dangerously delusional. Clear red flag examples: "Rubber Man", unmasked, after beating Dr Harmon says to him that the only reason he's not killing him is Violet. If he were to really be in love with the girl, he would have never do harm to her, not even in this sort of indirect way. While he might be able to rationalize this, as Dr Harmon later explained to him, he isn't capable to rationalize it as a "normal" person would.

Nevertheless, Tate knows how much is too much. Had he killed Ben, he knew he would have lost Violet sooner than it was scripted. Also, there's that scene when the new family moves into the house and Tate sees Violet and the new boy chat in his former room. He immediately becomes angered, tempered, enraged. I can understand people mistaking this as jealousy, however, it is not. This only shows the degree of frustration Tate's being encountered with due to the new possibility of losing Violet, who is now becoming more objectified. Then he goes on to say that he'll wait for Violet, "I'll wait forever if I have to." Then, the average hopeless romantic would applaud this attitude, it shouldn't be (I have a very hard time drawing a line between innocence and stupidity, pardon me) as it has nothing to do with romance but a narcissistic, spineless tantrum.

I do admit, Tate is somewhat misunderstood. But that's not more due to the traumas in his life and other outside influences than his own self-image - again, credited to his psychopathy. As far as Tate is concerned, the whole world can be wrong and terrible, but not him. Never him. This antisocial attitude attributes to his 'grandiose sense of self-worth'; this also explains the hatred for his mother, Constance, while conflicting with his so-called father's abandonment and the inability to wrap his mind around the idea of someone leaving him for good (Violet recall) - 'How could he have done that? Is he not good enough? It HAD to be Constance's fault, not his.' Rather than being hurt, he's insulted by this bit of his past. It's funny how the mind works, specially the subconscious... this is yet another sign of traditional psychopathy: Tate's inability to own up and take proper responsibility for his actions/mistakes. He'd find a way to blame anyone but himself for just about anything that he considers has gone wrong in his life, Constance being the main target. Though Constance is, in fact, responsible for some, she has no say on Tate's actions. His drug use shows disregard for his safety, another classic trait. As it is his criminal tendencies and knack for defiant acts towards authority and power figures, which, I admit too, are poor.

So far, it may seem as if I dislike Tate. Given the overwhelmingly constant blows towards deconstructing his character. However, this isn't true. If anything, I indeed like the layered complexes Tate shows. They are realistic and palpable. Extreme and exciting. Raw and recreated. I like that Tate IS a human monster... and I've just caught myself falling under a psychopathic characteristic as I find myself to often be easily and extremely understimulated, this one of the many reasons I find the character in hand interesting. Say No to self-analyzation when speaking of human psyche. You might scare yourself.

In short: Tate Langdon is Ted Bundy and Charles Manson's love child. Or, if fictional examples are preferred, Alex DeLarge and Martin Durnley.

Furthermore, if intrigued enough still, here are the two factors of Robert Hare's Psychopathy checklist... Have fun!

Factor 1: Personality "Aggressive narcissism"

- Glibness/superficial charm
- Grandiose sense of self-worth
- Pathological lying
- Cunning/manipulative
- Lack of remorse or guilt
- Shallow affect (genuine emotion is short-lived and egocentric)
- Callousness; lack of empathy
- Failure to accept responsibility for own actions

Factor 2: Case history "Socially deviant lifestyle"

- Need for stimulation/proneness to boredom
- Parasitic lifestyle
- Poor behavioral control
- Lack of realistic long-term goals
- Impulsivity
- Irresponsibility
- Juvenile delinquency
- Early behavior problems
- Revocation of conditional release

Traits not correlated with either factor

- Promiscuous sexual behavior
- Many short-term marital relationships
- Criminal versatility
- Acquired behavioral sociopathy/sociological conditioning (Item 21: a newly identified trait i.e. a person relying on sociological strategies and tricks to deceive)
It's all pretty clear.
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Artful-Dodgerette Featured By Owner Edited Jan 7, 2017  Student Traditional Artist
So, I'm no expert and I admit I am going to copy and paste this list, but here are the differences between a psychopath and a sociopath. I personally think that you have raised some interesting points, but I don't find Tate's crimes to be planned, rather haphazard(see his shooting, fire-setting, etc.) and that falls under sociopath. See, I feel that he displays real emotions in times that nobody is paying attention to him, and I wouldn't understand why he would do that. Therefore he's not mimicking an emotion. And I think that his efforts to revive Violet are emotion enough; he wouldn't have even tried to get her to throw up if he didn't care. If you'll refer to the list let me know your thoughts(warning, huge list): 

A psychopath:

  • Doesn’t have a conscience. If he lies to you so he can steal something of yours, he won’t feel any moral qualms, though he may pretend to. 
  • A tendency to display violent behavior when provoked, but not always. In the media, calling someone a psychopath just because they’re violent (coughcoughNathancoughcough) is common, but in real life that’s not always the case. 
  • They’re unable to form emotional attachments or feel real empathy with others, although they often have disarming or even charming personalities. 
  • Psychopaths are very manipulative and can easily gain people’s trust. They learn to mimic emotions, despite their inability to actually feel them, and will appear normal to unsuspecting people.
  • Psychopaths are often well educated and hold steady jobs.
  • When committing crimes, psychopaths carefully plan out every detail in advance and often have contingency plans in place.

A Sociopath:

  • A sociopath typically has a conscience, but it’s weak. He may know that taking something of yours is wrong, and he might feel some guilt or remorse, but that won’t stop his behavior.
  • Sociopaths tend to be nervous and easily agitated. They are volatile and prone to emotional outbursts, including fits of rage. 
  • They tend to make it clear that they’re not interested in anyone but themselves. They often blame others and have excuses for their behavior.
  • Some experts see sociopaths as “hot-headed.” They act without thinking how others will be affected. 
  • Any crimes committed by a sociopath, including murder, will tend to be haphazard, disorganized and spontaneous rather than planned.
poproxs--DrPepper23 Featured By Owner Mar 24, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Very well done. I think Tate's layers are interestingly complex, too. He's like an onion. Attractive and tasty in small doses, but very bitter and hard to swallow when consumed whole. And very bad for your health since he's a manipulative little psychopath who refuses to take responsibility for his own actions.
Khaleesi-1 Featured By Owner Edited Feb 18, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Remember when Ben said Tate was a sociopath he was crying before and suddenly stopped. With Tate being a sociopath / psychopath  its easier to manipulate people  than normal people .. When Tate says he killed those people he didn't feel anything. 
Also I like the complexity of Tate's character . I don't just like his character because the actor is cute . 
ThisishowIsee-things Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2014   Photographer
Very nicely done. I hope that once I take my psych class in college I'll be able to analyze the show better (of course I'm going to rewatch it. :D ) I was definitely caught between psychopath and hopeless romantic so this clears quite a few things up. Thanks. 
liebekaese Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2013
very well written! but what about when violet died? why would he have been that upset, if he didn't care for her (other than her being his goal)? if she's dead, she's bound to the house and him forever, so why was he so desperate to save her? i don't think you can say he's 100% psychopath... there is still a small part of him that can love violet, in my opinion. he even wanted to kill that new kid moving in (in the last episode), so violet would have a companion. i think their relationship also shows how girls/women always want to better messed up guys... but you also need some kind of "glimpse of goodness" for that to happen, you know what i mean?! god, i love analyzing messed up minds.
sambachan12 Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2013
Magnificent. So far, you are the only person I have encountered who has been able to see the truth –no split personalities, no Tate1, Tate2, Tate3, et cetera. He is a psychopath, thus he is unable to love or to care for anyone. If anything, Violet is his "goal", as you point out perfectly. She is the object of his desires, he cannot afford to lose her. A "catastrophe" may occur if something happened to her.

The whole suicide scene intrigues me, though. Maybe Tate was hysterical and didn't react accordingly to his usual behavior when he saw Violet in that state. Maybe he liked her alive then and momentarily "forgot" (so to speak) that she would return to him in her ghost form. And maybe he thought that she would be mad at him and abandon him in the interim when she began to know more about the house and the other spirits. Believe me, I'm tempted to believe that in this case he was concerned for her own safety –but this thought is delusional. After all, his goal is to keep Violet by his side. If they are together in the afterlife, moreover, trapped inside the house forever, well, mission compete!

I would like to read a more elaborate explanation of this point, if you'd be so kind:

"...and knack for defiant acts towards authority and power figures, which, I admit too, are poor."

And by the way, reading you has been a pleasure.
IzabelMarrupho Featured By Owner Jun 26, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
As always, the mind tends to go miles faster than one's hands will ever be able to, specially when it comes to writing (whatever the occasion may be.) In fact, after re-reading this myself, as I had to in order to reply properly, there are a few (if not many) typos and grammatical mistakes... ha!

Anyway, the authority/power figures bit was a trailed-off thought, elaborating on his disregard for safety. This both his own and others'. (It also serves to list yet another out-of-the-book trait.) As for the 'Rome and Juliet' bit he tried to pull off, I think you might be onto something.

There are also to consider that psychopaths tend to become bored easily. With things, subjects, people, etc. Plus, her finding out she'd been dead would let little room for him to play his little 'win-her-over' game. Their relationship would feel *Imposed*, for lack of better wording. And not to mention, it would have also injured her trust.

Hah, the speculations are endless! And thank you. (Perhaps I should write more when possessed by a whim. Perhaps.)
plginbby Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2012
If I could write this well, I would put together an argument. I think I might be the only person in the world that doesn't think Tate is a psychopath and not because I'm some crazy fangirl. Lol.

I like it none the less, I enjoy both opinions, though I haven't found one as well written for the not a psycho side of things (:
IzabelMarrupho Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
"I enjoy taking indefensible positions and creating an argument for them."
- Michael Pitt as Justin Pendleton in 2002's Murder By Numbers.

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