This essay examines the proliferation of visual representations of Robert Louis Stevenson‘s Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (1886), considering the question of what links contemporary (Scottish?) Gothic to its problematic origins. After a survey of cinematic and graphic adaptations, the essay focuses on Steven Moffatt‘s Jekyll (BBC, 2007), which combines the post-Darwinian anxieties surrounding Stevensons tale of human regression with a much more contemporary interrogation of the ‘human’ against the backdrop of complex globalised scientific conspiracies. Significantly, the production draws on the Scottish origin of the text, re-proposing the question of (national) identity and authenticity against the threat of globalisation.
Women, domesticity and the female Gothic adaptation on television
certain is that in the decades that followed the end of the war, a number of female Gothicadaptations were broadcast on television in the UK, including three BBC adaptations of Du Maurier’s Rebecca (in 1947, 1954 and 1956), and adaptations of The Two Mrs Carrolls (BBC 1947) and The Woman in White (Hour of Mystery) (ABC 1957).
Rather than offering a history of the female Gothicadaptation on television, this analysis of recent adaptations seeks to outline the ways in which these dramas are inherently medium-reflexive, and the ways in which they are evidently
Hammer’s first Gothicadaptation to show how the studio was able to effect a paradigm shift in horror by differentiating its Frankenstein from previous properties.
The story of Hammer’s film is articulated in the negotiations between networks of creative and corporate imperatives. The filmic process of adaptation is one of assemblage, where the concept of ‘fidelity’ to a source is less meaningful than the discursive formations that coalesce during production and saturate the final product. Considering the discourse around a film requires
The last decade has seen a diffusion of the Gothic across a wide range of cultural sites, a relative explosion of Gothic images and narratives prompting a renewed critical interest in the genre. However, very little sustained attention has been paid to what we might term 'Gothic television' until this point. This book fills this gap by offering an analysis of where and how the genre might be located on British and US television, from the start of television broadcasting to the present day. In this analysis, Gothic television is understood as a domestic form of a genre which is deeply concerned with the domestic, writing stories of unspeakable family secrets and homely trauma large across the television screen. The book begins with a discussion on two divergent strands of Gothic television that developed in the UK during the 1960s and 1970s, charting the emergence of the restrained, suggestive ghost story and the effects-laden, supernatural horror tale. It then focuses on the adaptation of what has been termed 'female Gothic' or 'women's Gothic' novels. The book moves on to discuss two hybrid forms of Gothic drama in the 1960s, the Gothic family sitcoms The Munsters and The Addams Family, and the Gothic soap opera Dark Shadows. Finally, it looks at some recent examples of Gothic television in the United States, starting with a discussion of the long-form serial drama, Twin Peaks, as the initiator of a trend for dark, uncanny drama on North American television.
This book aims to provide resources for critical thinking on key aspects of television drama in Britain since 1960, including institutional, textual, cultural and audience-centred modes of study. It explores the continuing popularity of the situation comedy, and makes a convincing case for considering sitcom as a key popular genre. By offering a sense of how 'real' audiences respond to, and engage with, actual programmes in specific social situations, dominant conceptions of the social meanings of Carla Lane's Butterflies and Jimmy Perry and David Croft's Dad's Army are challenged and renegotiated. The book takes up Queer As Folk to focus on its status as an authored intervention in debates about the representation of homosexuality. It demonstrates that The Prisoner series inhabits contradictions by unpacking the complex question of the series's authorship, and the inadequacy of attributing its meanings to its creator, star performer or production team, for example. The book argues that The Demon Headmaster makes a significant contribution to the project of exploring and defining questions of ethics and justice in social organisation, in part, by claiming children's culture as a space of experimentation, resistance and subversion. It looks at the ways in which television drama embodies assumptions about its audience, and pursues this in a sophisticated way in relation to late twentieth-century television adaptations of 'the female Gothic'. The struggle between the BBC power-base in London and its satellite Departments in Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales is also dealt with.
explicitly, this chapter seeks to define a textually inscribed viewer,
to theorise her relationship to the Gothic text, and to analyse the
modes of address within the female Gothicadaptation which speak
directly to this viewer. Umberto Eco’s notion of the model reader
is useful in introducing this approach. In his Six Walks in the
Fictional Woods ( 1994 ), building on work first presented
Terence Feely, commented on the medium’s suitability for Gothicadaptations, and drew a parallel between domestic parlour storytelling
at the end of the previous century and the activity of watching
television in the 1960s:
Victorians were willing victims of the pleasurable shudder that
makes the lamp light mellower, the
Horror acting in the 1970s British television drama
Richard J. Hand
plague of rats. In writing about female Gothicadaptations on television,
Helen Wheatley describes ‘the threatening, cage-like, labyrinthine
and, ultimately, un-homely domestic spaces’ (Wheatley, 2005 : 156) that are characteristic of her chosen genre. We
can see that Thriller and some other examples of 1970s horror plays
create a similar mood and function to their suspenseful drama, but target a
socioeconomic place rather than a domestic space
The spectacle of death and the aesthetics of crowd control
Emma Galbally and Conrad Brunström
whereas Boaden merely seeks to make a dramatic
spectacle palatable. Boaden’s adaptation of Lewis’s
novel was self-censored because of the feared passions of a
dangerous collective audience response. Yet plays could still be
produced under the guise of a Gothicadaptation that expressed muted
revolutionary or anti-revolutionary ideas. The
‘Gothic’ tends to explore the issue of
Monstrous marriage, maternity, and the politics of embodiment
Carol Margaret Davison
plutocracy where money talks, industry rules, and people – generally of the working classes – are casually exterminated (24). By way of Bella’s medical role, Gray gestures towards a substantially altered future when female authority will be recognised and celebrated, and women will retain control over, and be able to ‘read’, their own bodies.
As in Banks’s The Wasp Factory , Gray grafts a national allegory onto his Female Gothicadaptation of Frankenstein . While this is most graphically in evidence in Strang’s etching of Bella as ‘Bella