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V versus Hollywood: A discourse on polemic thievery

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Abstract:

Given that textual narrative can be infinite and the filmic framework finite, a space is created between the source material and its possible reappropriation, where a choice is made. Do the film executives decide to be true to the original (where the auteur's true meaning possibly rests) or do they bow to fiscal policy and sociopolitically risk-free cinema? The adaptation of Alan Moore's V for Vendetta from the original source and how this process evolves through film as a cultural, political and diasporic text is examined, with particular focus on the differing geographic and cultural ideologies that underpin the graphic novel and the filmic representation. This article posits a celebration of the beauty, visceral power and freedom of the graphic novel set against the power and homogeneity of the Hollywood film industry. It is possible to say that graphic novels do not exist as Hollywood's occasional goldmine, but in fact exist as a site of narrative and visual freedom, in and of themselves. The audience or subject position of experiencing the 'altered' version of literature, from all its various forms and sources, can be seen to create a spoon-fed pre-existent narrative usage via Hollywoodized culture that somehow manages, in this instance, to defuse political vibrancy and vitality and potentially reformat the narrative as mainstream popular culture … or does it?

Keywords: ADAPTATION; ALAN MOORE; FILM; HOLLYWOOD; V FOR VENDETTA

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1386/stic.2.1.195_1

Publication date: July 1, 2011

More about this publication?
  • Studies in Comics aims to describe the nature of comics, to identify the medium as a distinct art form, and to address the medium's formal properties. The emerging field of comics studies is a model for interdisciplinary research and in this spirit this journal welcomes all approaches. This journal is international in scope and provides an inclusive space in which researchers from all backgrounds can present new thinking on comics to a global audience. The journal will promote the close analysis of the comics page/text using a variety of methodologies. Its specific goal, however, is to expand the relationship between comics and theory and to articulate a "theory of comics". The journal also includes reviews of new comics, criticism, and exhibitions, and a dedicated online space for cutting-edge and emergent creative work. 
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