HBO’s Original Voices: Race, Gender, Sexuality and Power, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

HBO’s Original Voices

Race, Gender, Sexuality and Power, 1st Edition

Edited by Victoria McCollum, Giuliana Monteverde


186 pages

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This book constitutes the first major exploration of HBO's current programming, examined in the context of the transformation of American television and global society. With studies of well-known shows such as Game of Thrones, Girls, Insecure, Looking, Silicon Valley, The Comeback, The Leftovers, True Detective and Veep and Vinyl, the authors examine the trends in current programming, including the rise of queer characters, era-defining comedy, reinvented fantasy series, and the content’s new awareness of gender, sexuality and family dysfunction.

Interdisciplinary and international in scope, HBO’s New and Original Voices explores the sociocultural and political role and impact that HBO's current programmes have held and the ways in which it has translated and reinterpreted social discourses into its own televisual language. A significant intervention in television studies, media studies and cultural studies, this book illuminates the emergence of a new era of culturally relevant television that fans, students, and researchers will find lively, accessible and fascinating.

Table of Contents


List of Contributors

Introduction (Giuliana Monteverde and Victoria McCollum)

Part I: Authorship, Gender, Reception

1. Our Bodies, Our Self(ies): Mediating and Mitigating Social Media and Selfveillance in Girls (Hannah Bonner)

2. The Rise and Fall of the HBO Empire: Vinyl and the Gender of TV Legitimation (Stéfany Boisvert)

3. Queer Fantasies, Queer Echoes: The Post-Closet World of Looking (Nicholas Manganas)

4. Feminism, "Dick" Jokes, & (Re)Defining Masculinity: Satirising the Tech World in Silicon Valley (Amy Mackelden)

Part II: Race, Place, Power, Risk

5. The Personal and Political: Exploring Comedic Masculinity and Femininity in Veep (Carrie Hou, Nathan Stewart and Elena Chabbi)

6. Race and Place in Black and White: The False Dichotomy in True Detective (Jessica Maucione)

7. Praising, Erasing, Replacing and Race-ing Girls - Intersectional Online Critiques and the Ascent of Insecure (Francesca Sobande)

8. Forced Devotion vs. Acceptable Doubt: The Leftovers as a Paradigm Shift for Religion in Popular Culture (Kristen Donnelly)

Part III: Consumption, Criticism, Fandom

9. HBO’s Hall of Mirrors: The Comeback as Meta-Commentary on Television and Celebrity Culture (Jennifer O’Meara)

10. Marnie is the Worst: Antipathetic Characters in Contemporary HBO Programs (Oliver Kroener)

11. The Last-night’s Watch Game of Thrones, Contemporary Recap Culture, and HBO’s Continuing Legacy (Andrew Lynch)

12. Tone Deaf?: Game of Thrones, Showrunners and Criticism (Shiloh Carroll)


About the Editors

Dr Victoria McCollum is a Lecturer in Cinematic Arts, in the School of Arts and Humanities, at Ulster University (Northern Ireland). Her most recent research examines how horror films, including some of its most transgressive subgenres, deal with memory, ideology, and the often competing claims of nationalism, American exceptionalism and cultural sorrow. She is the author of Post-9/11 Heartland Horror: Rural Horror Films in an Era of Urban Terrorism and is currently working on a new edited collection entitled, Make America Hate Again: Trump-Era Horror and the Politics of Fear.

Dr Giuliana Monteverde is a Lecturer in Media Studies, in the School of Communication and Media, at Ulster University (Northern Ireland). Her most recent research revolves around representations of complicity in contemporary feminist discourse, looking at, amongst others, Sheryl Sandberg, Miley Cyrus, and the Kardashian klan. Giuliana contributed a chapter to Complicity: Concepts and Case Studies (2016), and has published articles in The Journal of International Women’s Studies and Critical Studies in Fashion & Beauty. She is currently working on an article for Gender, Work and Organization, and a book chapter on The Handmaid’s Tale.

About the Series

The Cultural Politics of Media and Popular Culture

Dedicated to a renewed engagement with culture, this series fosters critical, contextual analyses and cross-disciplinary examinations of popular culture as a site of cultural politics. It welcomes theoretically grounded and critically engaged accounts of the politics of contemporary popular culture and the popular dimensions of cultural politics. Without being aligned to a specific theoretical or methodological approach, The Cultural Politics of Media and Popular Culture publishes monographs and edited collections that promote dialogues on central subjects, such as representation, identity, power, consumption, citizenship, desire and difference. Offering approachable and insightful analyses that complicate race, class, gender, sexuality, (dis)ability and nation across various sites of production and consumption, including film, television, music, advertising, sport, fashion, food, youth, subcultures and new media, The Cultural Politics of Media and Popular Culture welcomes work that explores the importance of text, context and subtext as these relate to the ways in which popular culture works alongside hegemony.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General