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The Urban Gothic of Fin-de-Siècle London and Gotham City
Erica McCrystal

Gothic literature set in fin-de-siècle London has often been argued to highlight duality. However, the urban Gothic truly flourishes through its liminality, which allows chaos and order to coexist. Texts such as Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray offer versions of a Gothic London that have the appearance of structure but are difficult to navigate. Likewise, the Batman franchise has embraced Gotham City as a setting that provides tensions between order and chaos. In Gotham, as in fin-de-siècle London, liminality puts pressures on apparent boundaries. While the urban Gothic initially developed through nineteenth century British texts, modern-day comics and films within the Batman franchise have allowed us to see how a multiverse normalises liminality and embraces multiple works to speak collectively about Gothic tensions. This article analyses the liminal nature of the urban Gothic in both cities side by side to argue that the urban Gothic’s liminal nature allows instability to reign.

Gothic Studies
The Dark Knight and Balder’s descent to Hel
Dustin Geeraert

battle decade after decade, even as the architecture, culture, and technology of Gotham City evolve around them. Because of this element of continuity, Steve Brie emphasises, such conflicts are in effect ritually repeated in comic books and other media: ‘These fictions offer the reader interrogations of a series of myths and archetypes, which are universally recognizable.’ 5 The mythological vocabulary for analysing archetypal elements in superhero comic books has often been framed in biblical or classical terms, but at least one expert commentator (Dennis O

in From Iceland to the Americas
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Fear, the law and liquid modernity
Avril Horner

Malcolm McDowell’s performance in A Clockwork Orange and Johnny Rotten (John Lydon) of the Sex Pistols. Gotham City is also remade for a twenty-first-century audience: a ‘retro-futurist nightmare’ in Charles Holland’s words ( 2008 : 207), it presents a dystopian image of New York (although the film was shot mainly in Chicago). As David Halbfinger notes in the New York Times , ‘the creepy

in Globalgothic
Matthew J. A. Green

’s commitment to environmentalism intersects with his longstanding engagements in the areas of gender and sexuality. The irruption of the wilderness in Gotham City occurs in a story arc that stretches across issues 51–4 (Aug.–Nov. 1986) and represents Swamp Thing’s attempt to force Batman and Gotham City to release his lover, Abigail Cable, who, as a result of their relationship, is

in Alan Moore and the Gothic Tradition
Richard Lapper

In the mid-afternoon of 19 August 2019 the skies over the largest urban sprawl in the Americas turned black. At the heart of this darkness, drivers in downtown São Paulo turned on their headlamps, streetlights lit up three hours early, and Paulistanos started to make apocalyptic comparisons on social media with Tolkien’s Mordor or the Gotham City of Batman. “It was as if the day had turned into night”, one resident told a reporter. “Everyone commented because even on rainy days it doesn’t usually get that dark.” 1 Some thought there was a smell of smoke, and

in Beef, Bible and Bullets
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Katherine Fennelly

the most notorious villains of Gotham City. This correlation between criminality and mental illness is not uncommon in popular representations of lunatic asylums. It is this correlation, however, which has a potentially damaging impact on how real asylum buildings are treated after they cease to be used as hospitals. The representation of architecture in print and digital media, and particularly in an immersive experience like a video game, can have an effect on the observers’ or players’ perception of the buildings and environments in reality (Dow 2013 : 223). If

in An archaeology of lunacy
Swamp Thing and the intertextual reader
Michael Bradshaw

her complicit with the mainstream human world while fully aware of the harm it is doing to the environment. In the first major story-arc, the Swamp Thing plays the liberal, inclusive reformer to Woodrue’s militant extremist. This moderate role is abandoned by the Swamp Thing in ‘Natural Consequences’ and ‘The Garden of Earthy Delights’, when he holds Gotham City to ransom

in Alan Moore and the Gothic Tradition
Brian Baker

, pillaged art, lagoons, leper hulks: a Venice overwhelmed by Gotham City, a raked grid of canyons and stuttering aerial railways. 19 The pun Dogs/Doges, and the references to a Gothicised/Gothamised Venice, indicate that what is at the heart of Sinclair’s satire here is power, temporal power transformed (as elsewhere in his writings) into occult forms. Several characters (such as the artists Imar O’Hagan, a version of the real-life Gavin Jones) decide to embark on a ‘hero-voyage’ by coracle to try to penetrate the mysteries of a secret ceremony

in Iain Sinclair
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James Chapman

support his crusade against organised crime in Gotham City. There are two main narrative strategies in The Count of Monte Cristo. One has Dantes involved in political intrigue and international affairs, usually as an agent of the state. In ‘A Toy for the Infanta’ he saves the heir to the Spanish throne from the treacherous ambitions of her wicked uncle Don Carlos. In ‘The Barefoot Empress’ he foils a plot to assassinate Anna, Empress of Austria, to provoke a war between Austria and France. And in ‘The Talleyrand Affair’ he is the envoy sent to carry a letter from the

in Swashbucklers
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Brian McFarlane and Anthony Slide

Featuring more than 6,500 articles, including over 350 new entries, this fifth edition of The Encyclopedia of British Film is an invaluable reference guide to the British film industry. It is the most authoritative volume yet, stretching from the inception of the industry to the present day, with detailed listings of the producers, directors, actors and studios behind a century or so of great British cinema.

Brian McFarlane's meticulously researched guide is the definitive companion for anyone interested in the world of film. Previous editions have sold many thousands of copies, and this fifth instalment will be an essential work of reference for universities, libraries and enthusiasts of British cinema.

in The Encyclopedia of British Film