From Everyman to Hero: The Inculturation and Propaganda of the Adventures of Captain Marvel and Spy Smasher Serials
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Though the serial film is academically and critically disregarded, the format was a valuable tool of inculturation and propaganda. Serial films were widely attended by American middle class adults and children during their sound era heyday, a period where messages regarding World War II were conveyed to audiences. During the years of 1941 and 1942 the superhero genre of serial film informed viewers that the Everyman could and should become a hero to defend their country. Two Republic Pictures releases, Adventures of Captain Marvel (1941) and Spy Smasher (1942), adapted comic book source material in order to impart the latter message. The intensity of each serial's message varied based on their releases in pre- or post-WWII Involvement societies.
Table of Contents
Captain Marvel vs. Spy Smasher -- Introduction -- Genesis of the serial -- Sound comes to the serials -- Republic Pictures - the superhero studio -- Origin stories - Captain Marvel and Spy Smasher -- The analyses of Captain Marvel -- Spy Smasher rallies America -- Conclusion