Catherine Johnson

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Telefantasy considers the place of fantasy, science fiction, and horror dramas in the history of British and US television. Looking at two periods (the 1950s/60s and the 1990s/2000s) when telefantasy has been particularly prevalent on television, this book provides detailed historical accounts of the production of key programmes: the Quatermass serials, The Prisoner, Star Trek, The X-Files, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased). While each case study provides new insights into the individual programmes, the book overall argues that they have a significant place within television history because they challenge the persistent understanding of television as an intimate medium unsuited to the display of visual style. By bringing together these tales of alien invasion, futuristic space travel, and vampire slaying, this book offers a theorisation of telefantasy that demonstrates how representations of the ‘fantastic’ enabled producers to push the boundaries of television genre, narrative and programme aesthetics.

Telefantasy makes an important intervention into debates about television history and aesthetics, genre and narrative theory. It combines television history and theory with fascinating case studies of these programmes that will make compelling reading for academics, students and fans of telefantasy.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherBritish Film Institute
Number of pages187
ISBN (Print)9781844570768, 1844570762
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes


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