Brian Whitney has been a prisoner advocate, a landscaper, and a homeless
outreach worker. His interests include ruminating and perseverating. He has written or co-authored numerous books, and has been featured in Newsweek, Esquire, Inside Edition, Dr. Phil, Fox News, People.com, Cracked.com, True Murder, and True Crime Garage. He has written for Alternet, Pacific Standard Magazine, Paste Magazine, and many other places. He appeared at CrimeCon in 2019.
My newest book The “Supreme Gentleman” Killer is the tale of Elliot Rodger. He is widely known as the perpetrator of the Isla Vista Massacre, and also as the world’s best known incel, which means “involuntarily celibate. The book chronicles his descent into madness which he documented through his manifesto My Twisted World. It is also the story of how he became thought of as a “hero” and an inspiration to other violent criminals who consider themselves incels.
Throughout his life Rodger was angry about his lack of success with women. Rodger felt that he was a “supreme gentleman”, and a man of class and taste, yet he never found a woman who wanted him sexually. To say he was angered by his lack of success when it came to this situation was an understatement. In fact, he sought revenge for what he perceived was his sexual and social rejection. He stated in his manifesto “I didn’t start this war… I wasn’t the one who struck first… But I will finish it by striking back. I will punish everyone. And it will be beautiful. Finally, at long last, I can show the world my true worth.”
Rodger deteriorated psychologically for years, becoming more isolated by the day. He also became more convinced that females were “genetically flawed” because they were only attracted to men he considered “obnoxious brutes.” He began to plan an attack. As he wrote on an online forum If we can’t solve our problems we must DESTROY our problems… One day incels will realize their true strength and numbers and will overthrow this oppressive feminist system. Start envisioning a world where WOMEN FEAR YOU.
On May 23, 2014, Rodger started his rampage, which he titled “The Day of Retribution”, by stabbing three people to death. He then went to the Alpha Phi sorority house near the University of California, Santa Barbara, with the intention of massacring all of the occupants inside. When his knocking on the front door went unanswered, Rodger shot three Delta Delta Delta sorority sisters who were nearby, killing two and wounding a third. Rodger continued his rampage, shooting at several pedestrians in drive-by shootings and striking others with his car. He was shot by police causing his car to crash. He then shot himself in the head.
Shockingly, Rodger has become a hero for other some called “incels”, other men who want sex and have never had it, and who blame women for their plight. Some even call him “Saint Elliot.” He has inspired others to go on their own rampages, including Canadian spree killer Alek Minassian who before he killed 10 people in Toronto put up a Facebook post that said “All hail the Supreme Gentleman Elliot Rodger! The Incel Rebellion has already begun!”
The case of Elliot Rodger is truly one of the most fascinating and odd true crime stories of our time. I had long been interested in why Elliot committed his awful crimes, as well as the Internet subculture of “incels.” In this book, I took a deep dive into both the Isla Vista Massacre, incel culture, and other so called “incel” killers.
Writing the book was disturbing, as exploring the mind of Elliot Rodger is a bit of a wild ride. It was also incredibly absorbing. There has never been another crime quite like his, and rarely has a murderer detailed his thoughts so clearly as Elliot did in his manifesto.
I am confident that this book will stick with anyone who reads it for a long time.