The Genius of Bob’s Burgers

Comedy, Culture and Onion-Tended Consequences

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About the Book

Animation makes it possible to invent worlds that live-action would never allow, so why would anyone use it to make a sitcom about a struggling family-owned burger place? And why would audiences embrace this greasy fantasy, not by just tuning in, but by permanently decorating their legs and arms with images from the show and writing detailed backstories for its minor characters?
This book-length critical study of Bob’s Burgers examines the moments in which the animated sitcom exposes the chasms between generations, interrogates gender and sexual identity, and allows fans to imagine a better world. Essays cover how the show can be read as a series of critiques of Steven Spielberg’s early blockbusters, a rejection of Freudian psychology, or an examination of the artificiality of gendered behaviors through the cross-casting of characters like Tina and Linda. By tracing the ways that Bob’s Burgers and its popular reception reflects changing cultural attitudes, these essays provoke broader questions about the responsibility of popular entertainment to help audiences conceive of fantasies closer to home: fantasies of loving and accepting parents, of creative, self-assured children, and of menus filled with artisanal puns.

About the Author(s)

Margaret France is an instructor of English at Yakima Valley College in Yakima, Washington. She has also taught at Bilkent University in Ankara, Turkey, Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois, and at UC Davis. She has published scholarly articles on Daniel Defoe and eighteenth-century personal advertisements.

Bibliographic Details

Margaret France
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2021
pISBN: 978-1-4766-6937-3
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4457-8
Imprint: McFarland