Corpse, spectacle, illusion: the body as abject and object

Glynn, Basil and Kim, Jeongmee (2009) Corpse, spectacle, illusion: the body as abject and object. In: The CSI Effect: Television Crime and Governance. Byers, Michelle and Johnson, Val, eds. Critical Studies in Television . Lexington, New York, pp. 93-110. 9780739124703.

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In the case of CSI audiences have come to expect a body horror extravaganza and in most episodes they get one. Yet through a series of stylistic and aesthetic strategies such grisly images are not as disturbing as perhaps they should be. CSI has managed to make extreme imagery palatable to a mainstream audience rather than just a niche horror fan audience. This chapter suggests that the program has achieved this by undercutting the violent imagery it displays by advertising its artificiality so that audiences recognize and are constantly reminded of the fictional nature of what they are watching. The gore on display in CSI illustrates that audiences are not yet fully comfortable with “unrestricted” horror, but are happy to enjoy the fantasy of horror when it is clearly presented as such.

Item Type: Book Section
Editors: Byers, Michelle and Johnson, Val
Research Areas: A. > School of Media and Performing Arts > Media
Item ID: 16662
Depositing User: Basil Glynn
Date Deposited: 01 Jun 2015 13:55
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2016 14:35
ISBN: 9780739124703

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