Transgressive Women Warriors or a Post-Feminist Masquerade? The Evolution of Gender Portrayals in Female-Fronted Teen Television Series
This thesis focuses on the continuities and changes in gender portrayals in the teen television genre. It seeks to form an idea of how gender discourse has affected gender portrayals in series of this genre. Informed by theories on gender, stereotypes and mise-en-scène, it analyzes and compares Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997) to Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (2018). The findings of this research show that while teen television creators have aspired to present progressive characters since the beginning, they were still shaped by traditional models. Although contemporary teen shows clearly build on earlier installments, increased awareness of the dangers that tend to come with conventionality has resulted in multi-faceted characters who challenge traditional norms in both subtle ways and obvious. Recent news stories show that full gender quality still has not been achieved and, hence, that it remains crucial to question the portrayals that are consumed by so many everyday.
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