In today’s world, mainstream audience can’t find anything super in super heroes anymore. This might be a possible explanation of why the media tend to use less and less hero narratives in order to tell the story. Instead, TV shows and films are increasingly putting the spotlight on the figure of the anti-hero. So much that, in most cases, the story revolves completely around this quasi evil characters. Contrary to the morally questionable figures seen on popular TV shows or blockbusters, other media are increasing the usage of anti-hero narratives to appeal real people. Because those flawless, perfectly sculpted bodies seen on Baywatch never were an accurate representation of our society anyways.
The advertising industry is a good example of the above. Adverts build a reality of hope that makes us all believe we can, someday, become like those heroes seen on those big billboards. However, contrary to what happens in other media industries, the kind of anti-hero we can see in advertising is, in fact, a fairer representation of our society. For example, recent studies suggest that minorities have begun to lead this kind of propaganda. A possible explanation for this is that companies try to not only appeal a wider – real – audience, but also aim at attracting a diverse force work.
If you want to know more about TV and film anti-heroes, and why we venerate these kinds of morally questionable characters, read my last article for PETRIe here.