Master Thesis. Dark City:Gotham at the verge of reality
The comic book media as a tool for the research, measurement and understanding of social paradigms.
Disclaimer: All characters, fictional figures and locations used in this dissertation belong to their respective creators. I do not own or claim property over any DC Comics and Marvel Comics material, and all authors, artist and their respective work will be properly cited. The context in which these characters and settings were used responds to the personal opinion of the author, and it is based on empirical analysis and research. The usage of this characters and locations is purely academical.
Location: Berlin, Germany University: Mediadesign Hochschule Berlin(MD.H) Year:2015 Award: Best Master Thesis of the Year 2015.
In a few words
The outburst of the comic book industry and related films over the past few years implies more than just a mass media trend. As mass culture elements they are a reflection of our society and they criticize it somehow within their own reach. The comic books are an important media branch with several academical possibilities, but at the same time this medium has been under-appreciated by scholars (until recently), so it is exiting to incur in a relatively fresh field of study. This dissertation pursues, by means of specially crafted approach, to redeem comic books as a worthy subject for further investigations. The planed approach consists mainly in the development of certain steps and considerations that can be applied to a series of selected samples. The idea behind this approach is to establish clear and coherent guide lines for the study of specific elements within this medium. Furthermore, by following this steps the analysis can be displayed in essay form as a cohesive narrative that combines several theoretical fields. For that matter, the fields of rhetorical criticism, semiotic studies and discourse analysis were chosen as the theoretical framework to achieve such task. These studies will be oriented by a criteria based on philosophical and scientific connotations instead of relaying in pure aesthetic analysis. Gotham City is the main subject of this investigation because it presents a rich amount of characters, or agents, constantly reshaping it and it embodies a metaphor for sociological struggles of our western civilization. The essays containing the analysis will be organized in chronological order to explore the evolution and refinement of the medium over the years and to expand the notion of history retelling and reinterpreting capabilities of comics. The U.S. society will be the main relatable comparison source, but it will be also demonstrated that the selected fictional location applies to other metropolises.
Research: Ernesto Rodriguez Layout and design: Ernesto Rodriguez.