Studying the Story

I’m a considerably engaged reader/viewer and enjoy analyzing stories in whichever form they come. Books, television, video games, it doesn’t matter. I believe that looking at how other people write can help you hone your craft as well. Here you may check out my favorite takeaways, but if you would like more, simply peruse through the category “studying the story” on the right.

Student Research Series – Anna Palm, Media Studies 

*in collaboration with Oakland University*

Communication graduate student Anna Palm researches how women strive for independence, individuality and power in Game of Thrones and other fantasy texts.

I did write a thesis on superhero masculinity as I said I might do in this video. It’s called Wondermen and discusses the various masculinities represented on the Netflix dramas Daredevil, The Punisher and Luke Cage. You can check out the abstract (or synopsis) here. Unfortunately, OU doesn’t publish theses online, only dissertations, but I’m working on getting it published as a book.

Why We Need the Punisher  2017

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“We can’t be afraid to have these uncomfortable conversations about things that matter. And wouldn’t it be better to have these conversations triggered by a television show, not an actual gun?”

“Baby Driver” Review 2017

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“Additionally, music is Baby’s direct connection with his mother who was a singer (and a waitress at the diner he frequents). Meanwhile, violence in itself is a reminder of his father who was abusive and controlling.”

Review of Ready Player One [the book] 2016

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“As for Wade and Art3mis, who by the way is an amazing female character, I love how their relationship develops over time. It has its ups and downs and it doesn’t feel unnatural or forced. They show that a simulation can only do so much for a person; humans need true contact with each other.”

Arrow‘s Face-Plant 2015

*warning: nerd rage*

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“For a show that used to have clear goals in mind, it’s disappointing to see that the writers have no clue what they are doing. It has caused a train-wreck of plot holes, people acting out of character – especially Felicity Smoak – slips of logic (like in “Uprising”) and repetitive archetypes.”

The Story in “Among the Sleep” 2014

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“The major trick to having a menace in a horror story is not showing it until the very last minute, which they did well, I admit. I’m just not entirely happy with the revelation after the boys falls down a pit. Or was this adventure all about this boy realizing that his mother is the witch lady? I’ve heard that people who grow up in an abusive household aren’t always aware that what’s happening to them is wrong.”

Star Wars Prequels: The Tragic Hero by Simon Palm 2013

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“For now, I’d like to talk about the “tragic hero” theme of the prequels. To elaborate, in Episode II and III, the audience witnesses Anakin Skywalker going from being a Jedi Knight to becoming Darth Vader. After analyzing it, I have determined what the major flaw of this transition is: Anakin is not likeable.”

Notes from “Reading and Writing the Body”/Analysis of Trumpet 2013

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“Jackie Kay’s novel Trumpet is largely a retrospective of Joss Moody’s life—that of a black, transgendered and transsexual jazz trumpeter who married a white woman with whom he adopted a son. The plot centers on the growing tension between Millie, Joss’ widow, and Coleman, the adopted son. Coleman, angered by his discovery of his father’s biological sex, threatens to sell Joss’s story to a tabloid reporter.”

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