From Corpus to Canon: (De)Constructing the Genre of Musical Television
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Since the first musical TV series aired in 1968, the genre has developed in sporadic fashion. The series belonging to the genre have often been commercial failures, but, as this thesis strives to prove, that does not mean they are without aesthetic value. By first clearly defining and delimiting the genre to establish a corpus and then subjecting the corpus to diverse means of analysis, this thesis presents an evaluative canon of TV musicals. This canon is in no way objective or representational of any views other than the author’s but is nonetheless an attempt to legitimate the genre as an aesthetically valuable mode of expression. The thesis claims that even though TV musicals are victims of a duality of condescension, they should not be: Musical TV series have the potential to be valuable, not only in the context of television but in the context of art as a whole. Through aesthetic criteria and the concept of camp, this thesis seeks to legitimate not necessarily the genre as a whole, but those selected works which comprise its evaluative canon.
Mastergradsoppgave i Film- og fjernsynsvitenskap