Attraction on TV: rules of communication game

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The essay analyzes the game nature of screen attraction - one of the most important tools of television dramaturgy. Attraction is examined, in the tradition established by Sergei Eisenstein and developed by Russian and foreign researchers, not just as entertainment but as a way of influencing audience perception. TV viewing is regarded as a special kind of game developing in accordance with the rules established by a program’s format and repeated in this program’s each new release. The key aspects relating classic TV communication to game are: voluntary selection and viewing of the programs; clearly marked place and time of occupation; a set of rules mandatory for a particular game; the feelings of joy and fun generated by the participation in TV viewing; immersion of the viewer in the "otherness" of the game and simultaneous presence in everyday life. The rules of communication game are accepted by all participants in the process: the makers of a TV product, the partakers and the audience. Voluntary way of program viewing is an indispensable condition for TV communication, and the attractions are its most active moments: they are designed to capture and keep the viewer's attention, and to evoke emotions associated with the pleasure produced by game.

The essay explores the attraction-like nature of TV shows both as a content and as a set of the signs, as a way of the functioning of the audiovisual language. The variability of the TV spectacle is investigated as the phenomenon of postmodern aesthetics, as an aesthetic merit rather than an immanent disadvantage a priori depriving TV products of the right to uniqueness.

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Kemarskaya Irina N.

Ph.D in Philology, Leading Researcher, Research and Development Sector

Academy of Media Industry

Author for correspondence.


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