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‘Far Away, So Close’: Sydney-siders Watching Forbrydelsen, Borgen And Bron/Broen

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With its small population of only 5.6 million inhabitants, its public service broadcasting dominance, and no recent history of world colonization or immigration, the near global success of Denmark’s television industry over the last five years is as unprecedented as it is impressive. Previous work on transnational media distribution and reception has repeatedly shown that non-Anglophone content rarely exports outside its geo-linguistic region due to the perception that audiences in other regions would be too far removed culturally and linguistically. How, then, do we begin to account for the success of Danish language drama around the world?
Through an analysis interviews with Sydney-based audiences of the three DR series Forbrydelsen, Borgen and Bron/Broen (coproduced with Swedish SVT), this paper lays out four main findings that elaborates – or even challenges – existing theories of televisual distribution and reception:
1. Preference for the authentic non-local story rather than preference for the local or American story. The respondents in many cases seem to prefer the good Danish story to the local or American story because it is different in a more authentic way to what they are accustomed to watching from Australia and the US.
2. Emotional, life-world proximity rather than cultural proximity. Although the series may be culturally removed, they are still very much emotionally proximate to our respondents. The series somehow strike an emotional chord with audiences, a chord that seems to make obsolete any specific cultural connection.
3. An aesthetic of the Other and aspiration to modernity. The respondents also seem enthralled with the otherness on display in the series. Especially the fascination with the otherness of Danish and other Nordic societies came up repeatedly in the focus group discussions as an attraction with what respondents believed to be a more advanced and progressive society.
Udgivelsesår16 nov. 2017
Antal sider15
StatusUdgivet - 16 nov. 2017
BegivenhedECREA TV Section Conference 2017: The Future of European Television: Between Transnationalism and Euroscepticism - Universidad de Málaga, Málaga, Spanien
Varighed: 15 nov. 201717 nov. 2017


KonferenceECREA TV Section Conference 2017
LokationUniversidad de Málaga

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