Sharing the Joke? ‘Britcom’ Remakes in the United States: A Historical and Socio-Cultural Perspective
Communication. Mass media
Language and Literature
DOAJ:Media and communication
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AbstractIn an increasingly ‘glocalized’ world, the success of NBC’s still-running remake of the BBC’s The Office would seem to indicate the continuing vitality of ‘Britcom’ adaptations on American network television. Initiated by US producer and comedy writer Norman Lear in the early 1970s, such cross-cultural translation has nevertheless had a long history of hit-or-miss experiences over the decades. Following an analysis of how the early television developments of the situation comedy genre in both countries may have favoured the emergence of different types of sitcom humour, this article will introduce several case-studies of US ‘Britcom’ remakes so as to map out the socio-cultural specificities at work in the retooling process central to such exchanges from the British to the American television industry.