Patrick Bateman

Patrick Bateman

American Psycho

  1. Biography of Patrick Bateman
  2. Early Life and Background
  3. Professional Life
  4. Personal Relationships
  5. Psychological Profile
  6. Crimes and Controversy

Biography of Patrick Bateman

Patrick Bateman is a fictional character best known from Bret Easton Ellis' novel "American Psycho" and its subsequent film adaptation. In the film, Christian Bale portrays the character of Bateman.

Patrick Bateman

Early Life and Background

Patrick Bateman comes from a wealthy family with a house on Long Island and a summer home in Newport. By the time the events of the novel unfold, Bateman's parents have divorced, and his mother has been admitted to a sanatorium. His father, who was mentioned in Ellis' previous novel "The Rules of Attraction," had passed away prior to the start of "American Psycho."

Patrick Bateman

Bateman received his higher education at Harvard University and the Harvard Business School. After completing his studies, he moved to New York City.

Patrick Bateman

Professional Life

In the novel, Bateman works as an investment banker specializing in mergers and acquisitions at the fictional investment firm "Pierce & Pierce." He resides in the Upper West Side, specifically in the "American Gardens" building, which is located near Tom Cruise's residence.

Patrick Bateman

Despite his successful career in finance, Bateman leads a secret double life as a sadistic serial killer. His victims come from various social groups, ranging from his own colleagues to the homeless and prostitutes. The novel vividly describes not only his murders but also other heinous acts such as rape, torture, necrophilia, and cannibalism.

Personal Relationships

Bateman is engaged to Evelyn Richards, a woman who is equally wealthy and empty. Their relationship is held together by social norms and conventions rather than genuine affection. Bateman also has a lover, who is the fiancée of a gay colleague. He frequently indulges in casual encounters and hires prostitutes for sexual gratification. Many of his acquaintances, particularly those he meets at bars, become his victims.

The only woman Bateman feels any genuine connection to is his secretary, Jean. He affectionately refers to her as "Jean, my secretary who's in love with me" and claims that he may marry her someday. Jean is the only person in Bateman's life who maintains some level of authenticity, as opposed to the shallow individuals he surrounds himself with.

Psychological Profile

Bateman's motivations for his actions are difficult to pinpoint. He often kills those who disrupt his carefully curated image, such as those with better taste. He frequently questions his own sanity, experiencing periodic bouts of hallucinations and a sense of depersonalization.

Although Bateman claims to be devoid of emotions, he does experience rage, panic, and sorrow. These emotions can be triggered by seemingly inconsequential events, such as memories of unreturned videotapes or difficulties in making restaurant reservations. Bateman manages his insecurities through a meticulous focus on his appearance, possessions, music, food, and art, allowing him to temporarily suppress his emotions.

Bateman's obsession with his outward image extends beyond his appearance. He meticulously describes his wardrobe, business cards, alcoholic beverages, and even his expensive home entertainment system. He derives a sense of control from these details in his otherwise chaotic life.

Crimes and Controversy

Bateman's killings are not limited to murders alone. He also engages in sadistic sexual acts, particularly with his female victims during or after sexual encounters. His male victims are targeted due to annoyance or irritation, while the murder of a child was motivated by curiosity rather than pleasure. Bateman's experience of pleasure in this act is short-lived and not repeated.

It is important to note that Bateman's narration is unreliable due to his drug use and hallucinations. The specifics of his killings remain open to interpretation, with the author, Bret Easton Ellis, confirming that Bateman is responsible for some murders but leaving doubt surrounding the accuracy of his accounts.

Overall, Patrick Bateman is a complex and disturbed character, navigating a world of materialism, excess, and violence. His story serves as a dark exploration of the depths of human depravity and the veneer of sanity that can mask it.