Palimpsest Characters in Transfictional Storytelling: On migrating Penny Dreadful Characters from Television to Comic Books

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Abstract

Transmedia characters are fictional figures whose adventures are told in different media platforms, each one adding details to their story, as they are rewritten, altered or extended, varying the degree of continuity with the original. This discussion will focus on the identity of transmedia and transtexual female characters in television series Penny Dreadful (Showtime 2014–16) that exist in several gothic literary pretexts to the TV series as well as the series itself, also Titan’s prequel and sequel comic book series published after the series ended. Drawing on cognitive, narrative and transmedia theory, this discussion seeks to determine the essential criteria for establishing the persistence of individual identity of characters across texts and media. A central claim of this article is that the cognitive processes by which we as reader-viewers identify an agent as a character are cross-medial. Yet, there are important differences between media in how they represent a character. Of particular importance to this discussion are the power dynamics of transmedia entertainment, including the conflict and congruency between the way old and new media represent character through verbal and visual narrative devices.
Original languageEnglish
JournalContinuum - journal of media & cultural studies
Volume33
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)242-257
ISSN1030-4312
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4. Mar 2019

Keywords

  • comics
  • Genette
  • mashup
  • Penny Dreadful
  • transmedia characters
  • Transtextuality

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