Continuation and Desperation in Contemporary Multi-Season Television Drama

Strong, Jeremy ORCID: (2024) Continuation and Desperation in Contemporary Multi-Season Television Drama. Adaptation. ISSN 1755-0637

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This paper examines how multi-season drama serials, including those characterised as ‘quality’ or ‘complex’ television, deliver their continuation across multiple seasons. It proposes ‘desperation’ as a distinctive storytelling modality in which continuation itself and the narrative means by which continuation is managed are self-consciously brought to the fore, charting how this is deployed by many shows which use season-long stories and/or stories which run for the lifetime of the show. Dramas derived from literary sources are examined alongside those where original narratives are drafted while they are already underway, and the relationship between continuation, seriality, adaptation, and literary/story-telling models is considered. Finally, through discussion of ‘show bibles’ and ‘pitch bibles’ it contends that continuing dramas effectively adapt themselves through the manner in which earlier seasons generate models and possibilities for those that follow.

Item Type: Article
Identifier: 10.1093/adaptation/apae006
Keywords: Television Drama, Continuation, Adaptation, Serial, Series
Subjects: Film and television
Depositing User: Eilish McLaughlin
Date Deposited: 15 Apr 2024 12:44
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 15:01

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