I saw Mad Max: Fury Road over the weekend. Mad Men had its series finale. The number one movie a few weeks ago featured a character whose entire gimmick is getting mad. And tons of people are mad about how a certain episode of Game of Thrones ended.
Which is why I ask: Why is everyone so mad?
Anger, the emotion of being mad, is part of the human experience. It’s at the crossroads of rage and lies about a mile away from being upset. For one to be mad is to get in touch with an instinctive, impulsive connection with our ancestors, especially our ancient ancestors.
That’s only part of the answer.
Our culture trains us to restrain ourselves. Those who go the distance toward their goals often, but not always, have ways of restraining themselves, even in the worst situations. We appreciate their conviction and their willpower.
Secretly, we all want to let loose. We want to embrace our emotions on every level, especially those emotions that make us feel like we are free.
That’s what anger does. Sure, we can’t always control it.
When we get mad, who doesn’t want to knock over a building, let chaos reign, or at least tell someone off?
Every one of us has felt that to one degree or another. As children, even the most even-tempered person had to let off some steam in an aggressive manner.
We all get mad, even if we want to deny it. Since it’s one of the emotions people empathize with the most, why wouldn’t people write stories and make movies about it? Why wouldn’t an audience feel that emotion when they see someone they care for, real or fictional, go through something outrageous?