Attack of the New B Movies

Essays on SYFY Original Films

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About the Book

Since its inception in 1992, the Sci-Fi Channel (later rebranded as SYFY) has aired more than 500 network-produced or commissioned films. Campy and prolific, the network churned out one low-budget film after another, finally finding its zenith in the 2013 release of Sharknado. With unpretentious charm and a hearty helping of commodified nostalgia, the Sharknado franchise briefly ruled the cultural consciousness and temporarily transformed SYFY’s original films from cult fringe to appointment television. Naturally, the network followed up with a steady stream of sequels and spin-offs, including Lavalantula and its sequel, 2 Lava 2 Lantula!
This collection of essays is the first to devote critical attention to SYFY’s original film canon, both pre- and post-Sharknado. In addition to unpacking the cultural, historical and critical underpinnings of the monsters at the heart of SYFY’s classic creature features, the contributors offer a variety of approaches to understanding and interrogating these films within the broader contexts of ecocriticism, monster theory, post-9/11 criticism, and neocolonialism. Providing a further entry point for future scholarship, an appendix details a thorough filmography of SYFY’s original films from 1992 to 2022.

About the Author(s)

Justin Wigard is a PhD candidate and University Distinguished Fellow in the Department of English at Michigan State University, where he works and teaches in the areas of popular culture, game studies, comic studies, children’s literature, and digital humanities. Mitch Ploskonka holds a PhD from Michigan State University. He is a professor at The Ohio State University’s Agricultural Technical Institute in Wooster, Ohio. His work can be found in Mississippi Quarterly, Critique: Studies in Contemporary Fiction, The Cormac McCarthy Journal and The Popular Culture Studies Journal.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Justin Wigard and Mitch Ploskonka
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Bibliographic Info: ca. 5 photos, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2023
pISBN: 978-1-4766-8323-2
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4810-1
Imprint: McFarland