Blog Feed

The Future of Reality TV and YouTube

  1. Where do you think the future of reality television shows is heading? Will new forms of technology for example make an impact?


Reality television has become ingrained into the current cultural landscape, but it has shifted definitions and features so much overlap between itself and other genres it takes elements from (such as documentaries, educational content and cinema) that while reality television began has a bengre it has “evolved into a discourse” (Lorenzo-Dus & Blitvich, 2013, p11). However, as move deeper into the information the worst excesses of reality television have come to the forefront as controversial or sensationalist news, whether true or not. Attention translates more readily into money and advertising potential than factual accuracy.


I would argue that much of the original appeal of reality television – that of seeing normal people (as opposed to celebrities) in unique situations or going about their daily lives – has been somewhat supplanted by websites like YouTube or Instagram. Sometimes entire formats find themselves transplanted into these new environments. For example Allen Funt’s candid camera, which he claimed to be for the purposes of informing and educating the public, find themselves echoed by the “social experiments” which are meant to reveal how the public would react to unique situations. Likewise, stunt reality television are echoed by prank channels and the However, these two genres of videos overlap with each other, and the majority of the time are faked. While this could usually be passed off as harmless entertainment the majority of the time many of these contain outright hateful messages and faked news. For example, in the leadup to the 2016 American elections the YouTuber Joey Salads performed a “social experiment” where a car full of pro-Trump propaganda was left in a neighbourhood with a predominantly black population, and a camera was supposedly left there filming as a gang of black men found and vandalized the car. It was later revealed that those men were paid actors and the entire video was staged, despite being presented as true (Sommer, 2019).


This reduces reality television to its basest form, “…a morbid and depressing display of dysfunctional people whose lives are in turmoil. … a human form of bear baiting which goes under the guise of entertainment.” (Cadwalladr, 2008, p. 5). Social media influencers brand themselves and sell a heightened version of their personality and lives, or project a persona in order to reach a mass market. Much like Lamb’s (2016) comparison of Cathy Comes Home and Benefit Streets, although the Salad’s video pretends to be educational content it is completely fabricated, and has the potential to cause lasting damage to society as a whole. He has since announced his big for Congress in a move reminiscent of Donald Trump’s move from reality television to politics.


Perhaps most disconcerting about reality television’s translation into the age social media is the lack of consistent regulation on these videos. Jake Paul, one of YouTube’s are aggressively being targeted towards children with tactics that would not be allowed on television in the United States due to its manipulative marketing, sexually inappropriate content and up to 50% of the videos’ runtime being advertisement. However, because it is on YouTube they do not have to abide by these laws and the influencers can talk to their fans directly – equivalent to a child’s favourite character on a show telling them to buy toys for the show (Nerd City, 2018). “Children under the age of 8 are mentally incapable of interpreting advertisements with a critical eye, and have difficulty distinguishing between fantasy and reality” (the American Psychological Association, as cited by Nerdy City, 2018) One of the greatest controversies to come out of YouTube in recent years comes as a result of this uneasy blend of reality and fiction. Jake Paul’s brother Logan, who stars in his videos and creates the same type of content, found the body of a man who had committed suicide in Japan. Rather than stop filming he continued to keep vlogging and delivered a woefully inappropriate speech about the value of life in an attempt to promote his brand and image as a positive role model.





Cadwallader, C. (2008). When reality bites, it leaves deep scars. The Observer, September 7.

Cook, J. (2019). 1 year after his infamous ‘Suicide Forest’ video, Logan Paul is bigger than ever. Retrieved from

  1. Klein, H. Klein. [h3h3Productions]. (2016, March 13). The deleted social experiment. Retrieved from

Lamb, B. (2016). Cathy Come Off Benefits: A comparative ideological analysis of Cathy Come Home and Benefits Street. Journalism and Discourse studies. Retrieved from 

Lorenzo-Dus, N & Blitvich, P. (2013). Real Talk – Reality television and discourse analysis in action. Basingstoke, UK:  Palgrave Macmillan.

Nerd City. (2018, September 1). Parents’ worst nightmare: Jake Paul [Video file]. Retrieved from

Sommer, W. (2019). Joey Salads, YouTube star famous for racist pranks, launches congressional bid. Retrieved from



Fanfiction and commentary

The girl in the dream

    Recently, Adam often dreamed of a girl. In his dream, she wore a colourful dress with a white bag, walked in the forest full of sunshine, and smiled at him while walking. Adam was very strange. He never seemed to have seen this girl, but every time he dreamed of her, he would have an inexplicable familiarity. Adam shook his head and threw it behind his head. Get up and brush his teeth. Adam is a food delivery man for the takeaway company. Every day at the mealtime, Adam takes the guests’ meals and rides his small motorcycle to travel through the city. Although it’s tiring, he is very satisfied with his current life.

    One day in the afternoon, Adam took the meal and sent it to the guests. It was raining when he just left the house. “shit!” Adam said to himself, but he still had to hurry up. When he was late, if the guest complained, there would be no bonus fro him this month! He speeded up the speed of riding a motorcycle, and at the intersection of traffic lights, he stopped and waited quietly, the destination is right after the traffic lights, he shouldn’t be late.  After a while, the green light was on. Adam was just about to start the car. Suddenly an old man hurried over. Adam didn’t have time to brake. The old man slammed into his motorcycle and fell to the ground. The car was also slippery on the ground. After a while, fell to one side, Adam couldn’t take care of the motorcycle, he rushed to the old man and asked, “Hey, Are you okay? Do you need to go to the hospital?” The old man looked up and looked at Adam. When he saw Adam’s face, the old man’s body swayed and his face showed a surprised expression. Adam did not receive any response from the old man, and he was kind of anxious. At this time the old man said: “I am alright, thanks. You. . . are you Adam?” Adam was shocked: “Excuse me, how do you even know me?” The old man said: “ Yeah, Adam, I knew you since you were a little boy.” Adam feels weird,    He had never seen this old man in his impression. When Adam just about to say something, his cell phone rang, it turned out that the guest was urging her to order the meal has not been delivered. Adam said to the old man: “ I’m in the middle of something, I gotta go now, but I will call you, this is my phone number.” Adam wrote down his number on the old man’s hand.

    The next day, Adam received a text message from the old man, he wants to meet up at a cafe at 2 o’clock, Adam said yes. When Adam arrived there, the old man saw him and said: “Do you know that my daughter is trapped in World of Warcraft, I’ve tried all the ways to save her, but it doesn’t work at all!  now, only you can save her, only you are able to bring her back.” Adam felt that the old man loses his mind, Adam refused and said to him: “ I’m afraid I cannot do that. I have no idea what are you talking about, I don’t know your daughter and what you said about World of Warcraft.” But the old man showed him a video. Adam was shocked because the girl in the video turned out to be the girl who had been in his dream. He was confused and cannot figure out what’s going on here. The old man told him that the girl named Alice, Adam and she were friends since they were kids, they grew up together. Unfortunately, at the age of 16 when Adam had a car accident, he remembered nothing after he woke up, and Alice had been silently accompanying him, but a few months ago, The Warcraft took her away and trapped there, now Adam is the only one who can save her. Following his telling.  Adam remembered those memories. Adam decided to save Alice.

    Adam is on the way to World of Warcraft alone. He encountered lots of demons and ghosts along the way. However, he seems to be born with some kind of magic and he was able to display magic at this moment. Defeat all the monsters and demons. Finally, he arrived at the entrance to World of Warcraft, but no matter how hard he tried, he can

not enter. This entrance seems to have a barrier that divides the worlds into two. Adam sat down and gathered the whole body’s skill to release it. Finally, the barrier was torn apart. Adam released his power more forcefully, trying to break the barrier. Suddenly, a giant monster jumped out of the barrier and took Adam a heavy blow. Adam didn’t have time to defend and was knocked down to the ground. He spits out blood, the monster smelled the blood and became crazier. Attacking Adam, in the end, Adam only felt that his internal organs had been moved. The bones on his body had broken, and his pain was unbearable, and then, he lost consciousness.

  “Hey, hey!” Adam heard someone seems to be calling him, he slowly opened his eyes and saw a strange male face. “Who are you? where is it? why am I here…” Adam asked. “I am Tom, you were in a coma, so I took you to my cave to help you heal,” Tom answered. Adam looked at himself and although there were some small wounds, it was generally in the way. Tom said: “The giant monster is called Dawran. It is the guardian beast of World of Warcraft. It has hundreds of years of divine power. Most people have encountered it. No one can live, so you are a lucky guy.”

“ Is there any way to defeat it? Alice is still trapped inside, I need to save her, no matter what I have to pay.”

“Oh? Alice? Your sweetheart?”


“Haha, If you want to defeat Dawran, although it is difficult, it’s still possible, this weapon is holding you,” said Tom, taking out a sickle-shaped weapon from the box. “This weapon is called Fa’auliulito, It’s very lethal, you have to be careful when you use it, don’t hurt yourself.”

“Thank you, Tom, I have to go, Alice is still waiting for me.”

“Good luck, Adam.”

    Adam once again returned to the entrance of World of Warcraft. He directly used Fa’auliulito to open a crack in the barrier and then drilled in. Dawran seems to have already felt the arrival of Adam. He was irritated. This is the first time someone can come back to life after he has been fighting with him. So Dawran couldn’t wait to get rid of Adam, Adam was waiting for this opportunity. When Dawran get angry, Adam filled Fa’auliulito with energy and slammed it to Dawran’s head. undoubtedly. Looking at Dawran falling to the ground, Adam’s heart finally breathed a sigh of relief.

    He began to walk into the world and looking for Alice. Fortunately, he heard the woman’s voice, shouting “HELP! HELP!” Adam ran across the sound and saw a girl in a colourful dress. He slowly approached and called out: “Alice?” The girl looked up and saw Adam, the tears of excitement shed. Adam looked at the girl in front and the girl in memory slowly reunited, and all his memories flashed more clearly in his mind. Adam excitedly hugged the girl and said, “Alice, sorry, I am late.” Alice also hugged him and said, “No, Adam, I love you.”

Part 2: Commentary

  In my fanfiction, I followed on Vogler’s (1998) Mythic structure. There is three ACT in a hero’s journey. Act 1, set up everything: introducing hero, they receive the call to adventure, then they might refuse the call, but eventually, they would take the mission and enter a new world. In my fanfiction, obviously, the hero is Adam, he is just a delivery man in the ordinary world, however, he was born with some magic that he never noticed. The mentor is someone that encourages him to adventure, in the fan fiction, the old man who is also Alice’s father is the mentor, he is the one that told Adam needs to save his daughter. Act 2 is the development part, the hero encounter tests, allies and enemies, approach the innermost cave etc. In the story, Adam arrived in the world of warcraft and fight with Darwran is the main part of his journey. Act 3 is usually the climax, where they take possession of their reward, or achieve the goal, back to the ordinary world or married with someone. Here in the fan fiction, Adam defeats Darwran and saved Alice from the trap.

  There are a standard set of character-types in the movie, it’s similar to fan fiction, like this one, I would say it is more likely to be a script. According to Vogler (1998), based on Propp, who claimed that there were only 8 basic character-types in all the folk tales he analyzed: the villain- Darwran, the donor- the old man, the helper- Tom, the Princess- Alice, her father, the dispatcher, the hero- Adam, false hero.

  In conclusion, fan fiction is able to follow Vogler’s (1998) Mythic narrative structure.


Reference:, N. L. (n.d.). The Hero’s Journey – Mythic Structure of Joseph Campbell’s Monomyth. Retrieved from

Fan Fiction & Commentary


Title: Lin

“Chow time” A girl dressed casually entered the boiling room, all smile.

“Good evening, Lin. You look merry, you must have got good news from Yubaba.” Kamaji handover his old bowl to her, the old men relented as he was affected by her excitement. 

“Yes, permission to transfer, Yubaba said that this is also my task. I’ve never seen her so generous. Thanks for your encouragement, Kamaji. I’m closer to my real identity.”

“It still surprises me that Chihiro could trigger your hidden memories. That’s why you volunteered to work on pig farms.”Kamaji put down his chopsticks, sighed, “Pity that our bitter relationship with the human has shut the border down. Working in the pig farm will be harder than here in Bathhouse, but it seems the only place that you could access human in the Spirited Realm.” Lin frowned, “Their fights are not my business. Don’t worry about me. Even humans are pigs, I’ll try my best to regain my name and memories.”

Kamaji shook her hands. “Remember the boy in your dream, he’ll guide you to find your name.”

Lin nodded, “Goodbye, Kamaji.”

“Goodbye, Lin.”

Waterfall roared as the last sunlight shined on a giant Bathhouse. Three pig farms stood aside in a hill surrounded by colorful gardens. A group of dark shadows lurking nearby, reaching their tiny arms to guests and servants, seeking for something. As Lin approached the entrance, a rough voice echoed the Bathhouse, “Tell them this is a high-class bathhouse, not free accommodation for homeless!” Soon, a giant bird furiously flew away to the sky. 

 “Yes, Yubaba.” Servants greeted. Lin crossed the bridge and looked back for a while. “I’ll miss the gold and roasted newt.” 

The sun began to sink, and mist before the ghost-like town had darkened. Several dark figures were hurrying to cross through streets until three pigs entered their gaze. There, two adult pigs devoured and hit by a restaurant owner. One of them cast a spell. Three pigs quickly fell asleep. The rest, including Lin, swiftly carried them back to the farm.

Unlike the glamorous Bathhouse, the pig house was simply neat and filled with snoring sounds. When Lin swept the floor, new pigs were violently being stripped off. She froze as her throat couldn’t come out a single note. 

“Don’t pity them, freshman. They are just poultry.” said a wolf-liked manager. 

That night, she had a vivid dream: a familiar boy, human, was sitting against a broken trunk, crying. “I shouldn’t have left you, I’m sorry.” Suddenly the scene shifted to a shrine where the boy handover a wooden plaque (Ema) to a brown fox spirit, said he returned where it belongs. Lin opened her eyes with tears cousing down her cheeks. She believed that the strange fox was connected to the boy and the Ema. 

Time flew as more fragile memories were recalled.

A few months later, Lin and everyone went to the hall and saw one of the iron pens was loosened, nothing left except several footsteps toward the garden.

“Another pig escaped.” Grumbling noises filled inside the farm. “Everyone, gear up! Sun’s almost down. Lin,” the manager, commanded before the workers, searching for the freshman.

“Yes, I’m here,” Lin came out from the crowd.

“Put on the black cloak.” She put on her black cloak and covered her head. “I thought we just have to capture them back.” Manager.” He hesitated, answered, “It hides you from shadows.”

“Shadows?” Lin frowned. He avoided her gaze, briefly explained, “They attack living beings by swallowing them alive, some could even read minds to make their pray vulnerable.”

“Including spirit?” Lin pointed at herself, shocked. He looked at her for a while, nodded. 

At night, they traced the footsteps and reached to a misty abandoned harbor. A frighten scream bust out, they saw a little pig was fleeing in terror. Then, intermittent whispers heard in the chilling dark. Workers swiftly hide behind the thorny thicket. Lin looked through overgrown grass and saw a group of giant shadows with many hollow eyes were marching to the edge, where the pig was shivering alone.

“Do something!” Lin turned to the workers, but they retreated. Pig intensely struggled as its head was horribly engulfed into deathly darkness.

 “Hey!” A loud shout stopped shadows. They saw Lin stood up, uncovered her head. Suddenly, a chilling wind floats through among her. Vehement yells nearly breaking her skull. Shadows grew taller and broader upon her until they covered the sky. Lin stepped back thither limping. Shiver like cold blades scraped every bone. She heard many haunting voices, crying.

“How dare you interrupt our feast, spirit in human form!”

“Why do you look like those humans!”

“I’m starving. She looks delicious too, may I eat her?” a childlike voice approached.

“Oh! You want to know your real name.” 

“We don’t have names. How about some newts or gold, those are your favorites right, Lin?”

They gathered in a circle, trumpeting at her.”Eat her, eat her!” Lin shrieked in terror until a giant fox barked and quickly cast the shadows. The harbor gradually returned to placid. Lin opened her eyes and saw a headless girl, as young as Chihiro, floating on the sea. Lin’s shoulders were unstoppably shaking. “There’s nothing you could do.” the manager emotionlessly covered the body with his cloak. As he carried her away, seawater dropped from her pale wobbling feet.

Lin appreciated the fox who shaped into a smaller size. In the dark harbor, she could hear a deep voice came out from its mouth.”Those ghosts were once greatly respected deities until humans destroyed their last sacred land and shrine. They want others to suffer the same pain so they abandoned their titles and use their power to take revenge. But I saw you, you are as kind as he told me.”

The silver moon peeked out from clouds and shined on them, Lin shockingly recognized it was the same brown fox in her dream. 

Back to the dormitory, Lin looked at the old plaque with name “Byakko” beautifully crafted, continued, “Another time, I saw we were playing together under a cherry blossom tree. He showed me an Ema, proudly said,’I made this in a shrine. Happy birthday.’ He called me ‘Byakko’. I teased at him, said that is for wish-making, and it’s supposed to be in the shine. He blushed immediately.”

“When I was a guardian of the shrine, he gave it to me.” said the brown fox.” He apologized and said his family couldn’t feed themselves, so they desperately sold their land, including his friend’s tree. I was touched so I promised him to return this to you. Byakko. Even he’s gone.”

“That explains why I was abandoned. I was scared so I left the Human World and found a new life. But I never want to hate him.” She softly stroked it like consoled their sorrow.

“But not every spirit could, Lin.” Lin read its message, said, “No, I can’t help those fallen deities, they killed a little girl.” 

“They only became aggressive because nobody willing to help them. They aren’t as lucky as you are.” The fox took out a white fox mask, said, “Your name not just defines who you are but also gives the power that nobody has.”

A balmy sun shinned across the sea. Lin crossed the flower field, saw her manager stood before her, crossing his arms. Lin responded in silence.

“We are spirits, no matter how awful we are. So stop caring about those pigs.” he warned.

“No, they aren’t.” Lin lifted her arms like he carried her body that night, he froze. Lin looked at her willowy arms, murmured, “I choose to live like human because of somebody I cared, even I had forgotten him.”

She bent politely and passed by him.

A swarmed of shadows was slowly wandering on the street. They saw Lin and approached, reached their tiny black arms to her, moaned. They seem weaker under the sunlight. Lin reminded her of the boy. She put her hands on theirs. Slightly, a tremor, like a dam emotion, was about to break out, but not from her. More shadows gathered. Lin felt her body was filled with energy, her hands became fury. She took out a mask, asked the crowd, “Would you like me to help you?”

Before the bridge, many saw a pure white fox crossing the bridge toward them. Along with a group of dark spirits was wearing masks painted as fox. The Bathhouse servants grinned widely and fluttered their hand fans. Those masked spirits stepped in a luxury bathtub filled with herbal medicine. They tearfully purified themselves.

Upstairs, a white fox was standing against a scarlet column, with the owner.

“So, you gave them your masks and belongings.” asked the witch at an interesting tone. 

The white fox answered, “I’m not a giver.” The ghosts gradually took down their marks.” I only want to help them.

Down there, shadows became transparent and disappeared in the air, leaving many white masks behind along with shocking servants.

“All right, you win.” The witch snorted and threw her a train ticket. The fox swiftly transformed into a girl who caught it. Lin gave a deep bow before gone.

“You had a great employer, sister.”




By employing themes of identity and interpersonal help, I had slightly changed the genre of original Spirited Away. The tone is darker as I approach the spirits’ negative responses regarding the loss of human harmony as the Spiritual Realm and Human World are tightly connected and affected each other.

My fanfiction of Spirit Away has employed Volger’s (1998) Mythic Structure and character archetypes. Act I established the setting of the pig farm, introducing Lin’s desire, and her hero’s journey, Kamaji’s support and the background information of spirits and humans. Through Lin’s conversation with her elder mentor, Kamaji, raised the central question for individuals: rather they should be involved in the collective conflict or not, which will be answered through the conflict at the beginning of Act III. 

Act II breaks into three parts: encounter enemies of pig farm’s manager and shadows, Lin’s ally, the brown fox and tests from work. It introduces the fallen deities as shadows. the human boy as the “herald” who mentioned in Act I and appears throughout Act II. He significantly reminded Lin of her identity and motivates Lin since his story announced a resolution of the tense relationship between humans and deities. The brown fox is first shown as a shapeshifter as she was a mystery figure in dreams until they met. When Lin was in the supreme ordeal as she questioned her hesitation of saving the girl, the brown fox provides rewards. She becomes a mentor who completes Lin’s identity and guide her to the correct path. Lin, therefore, changes from a selfish girl to a heroine who willing to risk her life to save a human and the dangerous deities, because she learned from her memories that hatred only created more sorrow. She regained her love and care that she failed to recognize in the film.

In Act III, the climax begins with the conflict between Lin and the manager who debate the worthiness of human life. I inserted the conflict to highlight moral complexity and the spiritual clash of perspectives. The central questioned was answered. Resolution despite presents the purification of shadow, it also reveals the trickster in the story, Zeniba. Although she is trickster, she is designed to be positive as she rewards Lin by fulfilling her ultimate wish, a train ticket to leave the Bathhouse. Hayao Miyazaki left a gap of imagination when he illustrated Yubaba left Bathhouse without the mentioned reason. So I added Yubaba’s Zeniba was invited to temporary pretend as her sister. Lin returns with her elixir (memory, name and a better self) which benefits the income of Bathhouse. Her ending is positive and open to be interpreted. 

All Vogler’s archetypes (the heroin, “herald”, mentor, threshold guardian, shapeshifter, shadow, and the trickster) are applied in the fan fiction.  Although some characters share the physical ability of shapeshifting such as Lin, manager and brown fox. However, only the brown fox could presented her change of identity as she was revealed as the key character who unlocks Lin’s dreams. 


Volger, C. (1998)The writer’s journey: mythic structure for writers. (2nd) Studio City: M. Wiese Productions. 

Sophie Tse 16912888

Where do you think the future of reality television shows is heading? Will new forms of technology for example make an impact?

The demands for reality shows are exceptionally high among younger streamers as they are dehydrated by old-fashion context and most importantly have more chances to access various internet platforms than the rest of the generations. In recent years, public attention has been largely positive on ordinary celebrities, Dowling, the Guardian,2017) explained that young YouTubers began their business by dismissed the distance between ordinary and celebrity who believed to be unreachable. He stated, “ they started to wonder why our boring lives weren’t being filmed and broadcast, and so we started doing it ourselves, posting pictures of our arms online, like the Kardashians do.” Therefore I belief that Youtubers will be one of the main features in future reality shows since their enormous fanbase would help to establish a sufficient amount of promotion and concerns. The cyberspace is a borderless field that connects people across the globe. The influential status and net worth of internet celebrities motivate and aspire the ordinaries. The closer they feel to the performers the more sense or believe of reality they could get. 

In order to apply a high degree of reality, producers are required to understant streamers’ most desire which motivates their concern on the program and guarantees its ratings. Based on Wiltz and Reiss’s (2004) 16 fundamental human desires which are power, curiosity, independence, statue, romance, social contract, idealism, vengeance, honor,  physical exercise, saving, family order and eating acceptance tranquility, show producers capture the psychological condition and socio-cultural tendency by fulfilling their desire through onscreen performances. In the last decades, audiences in reality television shifted from distance viewers into direct participants. The Bachelor(2002), Keeping up with the Kardashians(2007), Survivor(2000-) to The Masked Singer (2019-), etc. We could trace and make an insight into the socio-cultural tendency through following the patterns of “reality”. Most of the recent reality shows are highly featured in public audience’s live participation, for instance, online or telephone voting. This is a critical characteristic in performing/singing/competitive shows because audiences’ desire a particular bias (to win a certain prize) would directly increase the investment and popularity of the show. “The reality television genre now dominates schedules, combining empathy and observation in a different way.” (Mountfort,2018).Therefore, this technology will thrive for a long while. Although the voting systems were reported to lack of transparency. Yet young audiences still enjoy the collective power of influencing the contestants’ outcome rather than win or lost. This is a phenomenon in Asian countries as fanbases often assemble their group of voters and continuously use different accounts to vote on the program website. 

In conclusion, I hope that reality tv will be more concern with the diverse public interest (not just money and love) and tendencies amongst young communities. If filming technology advances, more professional fields, like the space programs which set outside our earth, will be welcomed to the majority as it’s rare for the public to access outer earth via efforting private spaceships. 

Sophie Tse 16912888


Wiltz, J. and Reiss, S.(2004)Why People Watch Reality TV. Media Philosophy.vol. 6 (4):363-379. 10.1207/s1532785xmep0604_3

Dowling, T.(2017) We laugh, we cry, we cringe: reality TV turns 20. The Guadian. Retrieved from

Lamb, B.(2016)Cathy Come Off Benefits: A comparative ideological analysis of Cathy Come Home and Benefits Street. Journalism and Discourse studies. Retrieved from 


15/10/2019 – By Sam Watson-Tayler


Panel 1: Establishing shot of Spector Manor. It’s a dark night, the rain is intense, and the trees are straining against the wind. There are no lights on.

Panel 2: We see the gutters running around the roof, they are heavily overflowing with rain. An owl flies over the crescent moon, a watcher over the protector of midnight travellers.

Panel 3: Marc Spector lies with the right side of his head against his pillow, the light of the moon and the lights on the road illuminating the middle of his face from between his slightly open curtains.

Panel 4: Marc’s eyes flutter open at the sound of the voice of his god.

  1. KHONSHU (from off-panel): Wake up, my child. There is work to be done under my light


Panel 1: Marc turns and sees Khonshu holding a cup of tea, despite having a bird skull for a head, sitting with his legs crossed in a chair next to Marc’s bed. On Marc’s bedside table we see several medicine bottles with the name SPECTOR, MARC on them and a glass of water.

Panel 2: We see a bird’s eye view of Marc’s hand reaching for his medication bottles.

Panel 3: The same shot, but Khonshu’s hand stops Marc’s.

Panel 4: Marc is sitting up; his brows are furrowed, and he has a scared frown on his face. We see out of the window behind him and there is nothing of note.

  1. KHONSHU (from off-panel): There are monsters here. They have come to destroy this world as they always do. The Avengers, the sorcerers, do not expect them to help.


Panel 1: Marc looks over to the walk-in closet.

  1. KHONSHU (from off-panel): There is only one who can push them back.

Panel 2: Marc walks towards the closet, reaching for it.

  1. KHONESU (from off-panel): My knight of vengeance.

Panel 3: We see Marc from behind as he opens the closet. We see the various Moon Knight outfits from over the years.

  1. KHONSHU (from off-panel): My greatest warrior.


Two-page spread of Marc in full Moon Knight supernatural armour, as he pulls the bird skull mask on. He has an enchanted sword at his left hip.

  1. KHONSHU (from off-panel): The Moon Knight.


Panel 1: Moon Knight turns toward the window and through it we see a humanoid monster, with five octopi as a head and the heads of several massive predatory animals making up most of the rest of its body, things like crocodiles, tigers, lions, sharks, etc.. Moon Knight is about the size of a sparrow compared to the beast.

Panel 2: We see the mansion from the outside and from the right. Moon Knight smashes through the window shoulder-first like an American football player. The many mouths that make up the monster are open; it wishes to devourer Moon Knight.

Panel 3: Moon Knight punches the monster full strength in one of its faces.


Panel 1: Moon Knight lands on his feet, his knees almost buckling from the landing.

Panel 2: Worm’s eye view of the monster as it looks down at Moon Knight, black tar like goo drools form its mouth as its infinitely dark, empty sets of eyes all focus on Moon Knight.

Panel 3: Bird’s eye view of Moon Knight as he looks up at the monster and gives it the finger with his right hand, while his left holds the sword’s sheath.

Panel 4: We see the scene from the left as Moon Knight jumps towards the reader, just narrowly avoiding the monster’s massive foot coming down where he was standing. Despite the size and presumed weight of the beast no damage is done to the grass. Moon Knight is drawing the sword with his right hand as he jumps.

Panel 5: Bird’s eye view of Moon Knight with his sword drawn jumping towards the drooling, screaming heads of monsters and predators. The sword glows hauntingly white, a cloud of energy surrounding it, appearing to be smoke, as it rises it turns into furious skulls. Moon Knight is fearless, either through bravery, stupidity, or an innate suspicion of everything his mind shows him.

Panel 6: With one slash Moon Knight takes off three of the hundreds of heads that make up the monster’s leg.


Panel 1: The creature reaches down, enraged, and hungry reaches down towards Moon Knight, fully intent on killing and devouring him.

Panel 2: Moon Knight is taken in the creature’s fist, the many mouths biting into him, yet not drawing blood.

Panel 3: Moon Knight retaliates by forcing his sword into a wolf head that’s biting him, black blood going everywhere, all over his white superhero suit.


Panel 1: The monster, in pain, lets go of Moon Knight and he jumps towards its head.

Panel 2: We look at Moon Knight from over the monster’s shoulder as he comes down towards it, his sword held high the blade going downwards towards it face.

Panel 3: Moon Knight plunges the sword deep into his eye, the reader can barely tell where the eye ends and the black thick blood begins. It covers even more of the Moon Knight suit.

Panel 4: Moon Knight puts his feet against one of the monster’s five squid faces that make up its head.

Panel 5: Moon Knight jumps away from the monster as the energy around the blade extends it to be several times longer than Moon Knight’s own height.


Full page spread of Moon Knight decapitating the monster with one slash.


Panel 1: We see Moon Knight from behind as he lands on his feet once again, the monster falls to its knees in the background as its black blood mixes with the actual rain, coming down on Moon Knight.

Panel 2: As the mixed rain continues as Moon Knight sheathes his sword.

Panel 3: Point of view shot as Moon Knight looks at his own black, blood-soaked palms.

Panel 4: Point of view shot of Moon Knight’s hands now balled into fists.


Panel 1: We see Moon Knight from side on from the waist up, this continues for each panel on this page as he walks back into his mansion.

Panel 2: Moon Knight walks through the kitchen.

Panel 3: Moon Knight climbs the stairs.

Panel 4: Moon Knight opens the bedroom door.

Panel 1:
Moon Knight takes off all the armour.

Panel 2: Marc Spector, now wearing only his underwear, walks over to his bedside table, the chair where Khnoshu earlier sat is now empty.

Panel 3: Marc grabs one of the bottles with his name on it with his right hand.


Panel 1: Point of view shot of Marc opening the bottle with his left hand.

Panel 2: Point of view shot of Marc shaking two of the pills out of the bottle into his left hand.

Panel 3: Close up of marc throwing the pills into his mouth.

Panel 4: Close up of Marc taking a sip of water.

Panel 5: Marc collapses to his bed.


Panel 1: Bird’s eye view of Marc as he wakes up the next morning.

Panel 2: Marc sits up, running his hands over his face.

Panel 3: Marc walks over to what’s left of his window.

Panel 4: We see out through the hole where the window used to be and see no sight of the monster, just nice unharmed grass and not a drop of blood to be seen.

Panel 5: We see the Moon Knight armor on the floor, completely immaculately clean. No damage, no blood, nothing.

Panel 6: Marc runs his hand through his hair in anger and concern as he realizes what may well have really happened.

Marc: Goddammit.





I waffled a lot on what I was going to do for this project and I did come up with some fairly good ideas, but eventually, I decided that I would be able to come up with the best work I could do with a script. Initially I wanted to do a combination of Moon Knight and Lovecraftian horror, but eventually, that somewhat gave way to what I eventually did do. More on that later.

While I had, at first, considered doing a collective journey, I concluded that there just wasn’t enough space in the word count for that. See when you have a focus on more than one character you need more words in order to give them a satisfactory degree of attention. As such, I decided to go for the hero’s journey with a very minimal number of characters. Moon Knight, Khonshu and a monster to fight, because you need one.

With regards to the hero’s journey, in this case, I shook up the order of events just a tad, and far from used all of them. But the ones I used I feel are some of the most important, especially in a shorter story.

The call to adventure and meeting the mentor: Because that Marc already knows Khonshu, saying “meeting the mentor” is a little bit inaccurate, but I think it counts given that Khonshu is there to tell him what to do and in this case tells him to slay the beast.

Refusing the call: Marc, suspicious of what he’s saying due to his mental health issues in the comics, reaches for his medication, but Khonshu stops him from taking it.

Crossing the threshold: Marc decides to accept what he’s being told and suits up to fight the monster.

Ordeal: There are two in place here, the physical battle against the monster and potentially the mental battle against Marc’s own mental illnesses, hence the implication that all of this was hallucinatory in nature.

The road back: Upon returning to bed and throwing his armour off, Marc does have a degree of satisfaction, but he is still suspicious, hence the choice to take the medication at the end.

Return with the elixir: Marc is rewarded with taking his medicine and getting back to sleep. However, upon awakening and finding every trace of the previous night’s ordeal gone, he is given the knowledge that his suspicions may well have been right and degree of both vindication and concern (Bronzite, n.d.).

Much like with Lovecraft, Moon Knight deals in both interdimensional gods and mental health. Compare for a moments Dagon to Moon Knight (2016). The protagonist of Dagon himself openly wondering if the story he is recounting is even true, or if he has simply succumbed to madness and in Moon Knight (2016) Marc Spector does the same, ultimately being told by Khonshu to trust his own madness and let it guide him (Lemire, 2016) (Lovecraft, 1919). Warren Ellis’ take on Moon Knight even raising the question of if Marc Spector’s dissociative identity disorder is even real and posing the possibility that Khonshu’s inhuman consciousness inhabiting his brain caused brain damage and Marc’s multiple personalities are as a result of his mind trying desperately to accommodate it (Ellis, 2014).

Hence my choice to question the existence of what Marc is fighting, it wasn’t just a dream, he really did smash through his own window, but maybe what he fought wasn’t there and he was just hallucinating. Or perhaps what he saw really was there and simply vanished after its death, or maybe his medication affects his ability to perceive things from other planes. I leave that open to interpretation.

Bronzite, D. (n.d.). The Hero’s Journey – Mythic Structure of Joseph Campbell’s Monomyth. Retrieved from

Lemire, J. (2016). Moon Knight Vol. 1: Lunatic. New York, NY: Marvel Entertainment.

Lovecraft, H. P. (1919). Dagon.

Ellis, W. (2014). Moon Knight Vol. 7. New York, NY: Marvel Entertainment.





Weeks 11 and 12 the future of reality tv.

I hate to open a post like this, but, with a few exceptions, I cannot stand reality television. Even the use of the “reality” to describe it gives it too much dignity in my opinion, and as with most genres that I vehemently dislike I don’t really consume it.

However, I am expected to engage with it on some level for this course, as such I’ve decided to talk a little bit about where I think reality TV is going and I think it’s going online.

Not in the same way that television and film are generally heading online with the rising ubiquity of streaming services, but in a more independent, viewer and producer way.

The only reality show that I can stomach is on YouTube and it’s called Buzzfeed Unsolved, it’s also an exception to my general distaste for Buzzfeed. The hosts Shane Madej and Ryan Bergara investigate unsolved crimes and alleged supernatural occurrences and while they make fun of each other they do so in a way that friends often do, making fun of each other’s quirks and polar opposite opinions on whether or not the supernatural exists. They also take and answer questions from the audience (Bergara, 2016). This is where I think that YouTube is the future of reality tv, YouTube more than television allows for interaction between the audience and the producers that television does not. This adds to the feeling of seeing real people doing real things and the perceived connection between the average person and the people they see in their entertainment as spoken of by Blitvich & Lorenzo-Dus (2013)

There is a very dark side to this, however, as spoken of, again by Blitchish & Lorenzo-Dus (2013) controversy breeds views and YouTube breeds money. This is my honest opinion has lead to, among other things the trainwreck in slow motion that was Logan Paul’s visit to Japan. if you wanna talk about impoliteness, let’s talk about Logan Paul going out into a forest known as a suicide location, filming the body of a suicide victim and uploading it to YouTube and leaving it there until the controversy was such that he had no choice but to take it down (ABC News, 2018). Despite all of this, he’s still around and still making videoes. I don’t see this as much more tasteless than what reality tv usually gets up to. As far as I know, they’ve never done that, but I wouldn’t put it past them given the “all publicity is good publicity” mindset.

Blitvich, P. G., & Lorenzo-Dus, N. (2013). Real Talk: Reality Television and Discourse Analysis in Action. Basingstoke, England: Palgrave Macmillan Limited.

Bergara, R. (Producer). (2016). Buzzfeed unsolved [Television series]. New York, NY: YouTube.

ABC News. (2018, January 2). YouTube star under fire for video of apparent suicide victim [Video file]. Retrieved from


How does Mountfort (2018) argue that the technological doppelganger differs from its Romantic precursors?


The major differences Mountfort (2018) cites are that in the shift from supernatural to scientific origins the doppelganger is now intertwined with an “ambivalence” or outright distrust of scientific progress. As such there is a greater focus on urban environments, especially facilities in which these doppelgangers were created (Lynda as cited by Mountfort, 2018). While they keep the idea of the doppelganger as a sign of ill fortune this is now tied with society’s anxieties about the development of new technology.



What other TV shows or movies can you think of which have sinister doubles in them and which of the above category do you think they belong to?


Bioshock Infinite

The premise of Bioshock Infinite rests on multiverse theory, and takes place in an alternate history where a city in the sky called Columbia was created which separated from America to form a nationalistic, racist state of it’s own. This makes the game as a whole part of the uchronie genre and explores how society could . Much of the appeal of these stories comes from what they reveal about the decisions and turning points made in history, as well as the possibility of synchronicity which may underly all of it (Mountfort, 2016). The doppel gangers are quantum doubles in a true sense and many references are made to many worlds theories, and they become a vehicle to explore the various

As such the main characters encounter various doppelgangers both of themselves and others, many of which reveal a darker side to their personalities. For example, the character of Daisy Fitzroy is portrayed as a pragmatic freedom fighter at the beginning of the game, but in another world she leads a violent revolution which throws the city into chaos and results in widespread death and destruction, to the point that she is willing to kill the child of one of the city’s noble elites. It is left up to interpretation whether the Daisy from this world and the one from the previous one would act under the same circumstances, but exists

Similarly, the main antagonist of the game and ruler of the city of Zachary Hale Comstock, who is revealed at the end of the game to be an alternate version of the main character. Although I would argue it did not make for effective gameplay and the story was not very cohesive as a whole, the inevitability of fate is a recurring theme in the story both in the gameplay – no matter the player’s choice that are lead down a linear path, and although the main characters try to escape their  mistakes they unknowingly recreate their sins. Despite the endless sea of possibilities, all roads lead back to their sins. At the end of the game it is revealed that the many parts of the game paralleling the first game where more than simple homage, but an intentional distortion of the previous games. The city of Rapture under the sea founded on Randian Objectivism may at first glance seem like the inverse of Columbia’s ultranationalist religious segregationist state, but they stem from the same roots and suffer similar fates as broken dystopias.



Doctor Who

Doctor Who – There are various examples of sinister doubles scattered throughout the franchise’s, but one of the more recent and direct versions of them are the Gangers from the series 6 episodes The Rebel Flesh and The Almost People. They are officially called “The Flesh Avatars” but gain the name “Gangers” from the word doppelganger, and possibly a pun on the fact that “Ganger” is a British term for the foreman of gang of labourers. They are genetic doubles (Mountfort, 2018) but are an unusual example of such, with more disconcerting implications for working-class people than anyone else in society. Mountfort draws parallels between Orphan Black and real world cases attempting to copyright DNA –  “late capitalism’s relentless commercialization of life” (Mountfort, p. 71). While the birth of Gangers are an accident rather than the result of careful deliberate control over the populace they raise similar questions about the value of human life as it becomes increasingly easy to duplicate and exploit cloning technology, and the ethics of treating these genetic doubles.


The Gangers are made from a flesh substance which takes on the shape of the humans they are based off, and are telepathically controlled by factory workers in order to work in toxic or dangerous environments that are too dangerous for human beings to work in. The show introduces us to this concept by showing one of the workers in a hazard suit falling into a vat of toxic waste only for the others to roll their eyes, indicating that this sort of death and lack of workplace safety is commonplace among them. It is only after a strange atmospheric event and a bolt of lightning that they are animated and begin to move on their own, containing the memories of the people they were made from.


Knowing that they have a double threatens the human workers’ sense of identity and security in their unique qualities as human beings, fearing that they will be replaced or made obsolete in some way by the existence of their Gangers. On the other hand the gangers are also forced to confront the existential terror of knowing their memories are constructed and must consider whether they are equally valid. This seems almost a variant on the Ship of Theseus thought experiment (Worley, n.d.) in which an object has all its parts replaced (e.g. a car or a ship) and the question raised is whether they can be considered the same object as they were before.


At various points they are shown to be sympathetic and at one point a ganger and his human counterpart discuss the possibility of raising his child together. For most of the story the show seems ambivalent about the positive effects of this technology, and one of the Gangers is revealed to be killing the rest of the cast, deceiving them through her . Notably, as she kills more people she becomes more deformed, a corrupted version of humanity, and the Gangers themselves often lose cohesion and their features are distorted as the telepathic link grows weaker. Ultimately the Gangers are concluded to be just as valid as human life as plot twist reveals that a double of the main character has sacrificed his life to save the rest of the cast, and even his closest friends could not tell the difference.


This also plays into the themes of the episode, as the workers themselves are considered disposable by their employers and they work dangerous, low paying jobs far away from their homes. The parallels to migrant workers are obvious, and the episodes speak to working-class anxieties of being easily replaced and disposable.




Mountfort, P. (2016). The I Ching and Philip K. Dick’s The Man in the High Castle. Science Fiction Studies, 43(2), 287-309. Retrieved from: 10490437_4/institution/Papers/ENGL602/Publish/Mountfort%202016_High%20Castle.pdf


Mountfort, P. (2018). Science fictional doubles: Technologization of the doppelgänger and sinister science in serial science fiction TV. Journal of Science & Popular Culture, 1(1), 59-75.doi:10.1386/jspc.1.1.59_1


Worley, P. The ship of Theseus. (n.d.) Retrieved from