This chapter explores a “Netflix discourse” of fandom where it is claimed that Netflix can “unveil” fandom even when audiences do not self-identify as fans. This creates tensions between lived experiences of fandom and the data-driven targeting of multi-niche fan audiences. Rather than arguing that Netflix displaces national (US/UK) mainstreams, the chapter considers how national/transnational fan identities remain relationally in play. It focuses on Black Mirror as a case study, with this Channel 4 show having become a Netflix production from 2016 onward. The program’s creator, Charlie Brooker, mocked fears of “Americanization,” with the program’s fandom on Reddit following his lead and tending to read Netflix-produced seasons in terms of an “extended universe” rather than via US/UK-oriented meanings. However, fans have also carried out “coded” readings of “authentic” (British / Channel 4) Black Mirror by suggesting a “secret downer ending” to a Netflix episode that appeared to have an unusually happy ending.
|Title of host publication||Transatlantic Television Drama|
|Subtitle of host publication||Industries, Programs, and Fans|
|Editors||Matt Hills, Michele Hilmes, Roberta Pearson|
|Place of Publication||New York|
|Publisher||Oxford University Press|
|Number of pages||26|
|ISBN (Print)||9780190663131, 9780190663124|
|Publication status||Published - 24 Jan 2019|
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- Department of Communication & Humanities - Professor of Fandom Studies
- School of Arts and Humanities
- Centre for Participatory Culture - Director