Millions of adults think they could get away with ‘the perfect crime’ – because they watch so many TV thrillers, a study has found.
‘Whodunnit’ shows have become hugely popular with an average of almost four hours a week spent gripped by twists and turns to uncover the villain.
As a result, a poll of 2,000 fans of detective dramas found nearly a quarter reckon they are so clued up on the mistakes criminals make in the shows that they could get away with committing their own crime.
One in five think they would know who to befriend to remain undetected if they were to break the law.
And much like a tactical game of Cluedo, 22 per cent reckon they would know the ideal location to carry out their ‘perfect crime’ without being traced.
The study was commissioned by FOX, to celebrate the launch of the fourth series of NCIS: NEW ORLEANS on Friday 20th July at 9pm.
Starring Star Trek: Enterprise actor Scott Bakula, the series follows criminal investigations involving military personnel in ‘The Big Easy’ – a colourful city known for its music and decadence which also harbours a dark side.
A spokesman for FOX 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.”
Researchers also found 44 per cent of crime drama fans have reflected on the shows they watch and contemplated how they might have carried out the crime differently.
So it comes as no surprise nearly half enjoy how these TV shows get them thinking, with six in 10 appreciating the story lines.
Two thirds switch on detective dramas because of the mystery, while four in 10 enjoy the characters.
And 56 per cent love watching crime shows because they like figuring out ‘whodunnit’.
In fact, one quarter think they could solve a crime because of the knowledge they’ve accumulated from episodes of detective dramas.
More than half believe they have an eye for detail which would make them a winning detective, with more than a third possessing skills of acute observation and concentration.
Forty-five per cent would apply their logical thinking to uncover the truth, and three in 10 reckon they have the ability to consider different scenarios in order to crack the case.
In fact, 82 per cent have managed to solve a TV crime before the characters have revealed the answer.
It also emerged UK adults are so engrossed in the mystery of crime shows they watch that three in 10 have even deliberated changing careers to a profession which allows them to live the life of a TV show detective.
Nearly half have looked into pursuing a career as a forensic scientist and 36 per cent have debated re-training as a detective.
One quarter have contemplated a future as a criminologist, and an equal number would love to see themselves like James Bond as a special agent.
Typically enjoying three episodes a week for just under four hours, on average, two fifths will watch more crime and detective shows than any other TV genre.
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The UK premiere of NCIS: NEW ORLEANS season 4 launches on Friday 20th July at 9pm, only on FOX