On 23rd May 2010 some 13 million American viewers watched the series finale of Lost, one of the most popular TV shows of the last decades. Over six seasons and 114 episodes, the destiny of the survivors of the crash of flight Oceanic 815 on a not-exactly-deserted island fascinated the public, stimulating any kind of speculation and interpretation. This audience paid attention to the web of cultural references created by some of the characters’ names: among the crash survivors and their enemies/allies we find homonyms of philosophers, physicists, famous anarchists, etc. In this article, I will analyse this cultural name-dropping and, more generally, the anthroponomastic practice of the show, in order to ascertain to what extent the characters’ names are functional to the story’s narrative development and to suspense creation. In particular, I will consider whether this abundance of famous homonyms can really be considered revealing of the characters’ features or if they simply contribute to catching the audience’s attention and creating expectations.

Cultural References in Lost Anthroponomastics: Revealing or Misleading Hints?

BENATI, CHIARA
2014

Abstract

On 23rd May 2010 some 13 million American viewers watched the series finale of Lost, one of the most popular TV shows of the last decades. Over six seasons and 114 episodes, the destiny of the survivors of the crash of flight Oceanic 815 on a not-exactly-deserted island fascinated the public, stimulating any kind of speculation and interpretation. This audience paid attention to the web of cultural references created by some of the characters’ names: among the crash survivors and their enemies/allies we find homonyms of philosophers, physicists, famous anarchists, etc. In this article, I will analyse this cultural name-dropping and, more generally, the anthroponomastic practice of the show, in order to ascertain to what extent the characters’ names are functional to the story’s narrative development and to suspense creation. In particular, I will consider whether this abundance of famous homonyms can really be considered revealing of the characters’ features or if they simply contribute to catching the audience’s attention and creating expectations.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11567/811408
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