This is a research paper about a TV show, I already picked Friends. Basically just write about why it still popular in the world. Why it is still on TV after so many years. The essay will be ten pages (included front page and work cited) There will three journals to write before writing the essay. Also a powerpoint about the outline it only need five slides and two minutes to present. But I want the ppt tonight because I have to present tomorrow. Other things can be hand in later
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Research Paper Assignment Sheet
Select a popular TV or film series and discuss its appeal to its consumers (viewers) and specific ways the
series distinguishes itself from other mass media and popular culture and the impact the series has had (or
not) on other series, media, or popular culture.
To start off, I think this assignment will be challenging but also fun as it will immerse you in a topic that
you already know something about (a TV or film series). The key to this essay is to break it up into parts
or sections that are detailed and easy to understand but also relate to each other. Your overall thesis
should touch or benefit from each section and your conclusion should perhaps be the best place to tie
most of your main ideas together to create your argument. Of course, a clever introduction that signals
your intent and suggests your path to the reader is necessary.
The real genius, in my view, of this assignment is to synthesize things you know about the series with
things you find out through research and writing. Then, you should apply these discoveries and ideas and
connections to how the show itself appeals to its viewer and may also influence other
shows/programs/movies/films like it. Remember, synthesizing for our purposes is taking ideas from two
or more sources and creating a distinct and unique idea from these sources that you use to critically
discuss other sources. In a 10-source essay like this one you should have no trouble synthesizing all over
Required Parts of the Research Paper and Extra Help
Below I have tried to give you lots of help with developing your essay. I realize some of you will not need
much help and will already have quite a bit to say and perhaps a few main points you want to spend lots
of time on. I also realize some of you will have no idea where to start, thus I offer the following ideas to
I have broken down the following list into things you (MUST) do for the essay and things you might want
to do. Things you (MUST) do are mandatory and not including them will lower your grade. Please note:
there is no required order below, but I do list things in a suggestive order for those who want extra help
1. It would be a good idea to help frame the series with discussion of how long it has been on
television or the internet or in theatres and how many episodes and other related data. Such
information will help establish the series in terms of history and longevity and perhaps influence
on other series. Discuss the medium of the series (film, TV, internet, other) could also lend
insight into how audiences view and consume the material. Perhaps the series has over time made
it to several different mediums, if so, what does this mean or what could it suggest about the
series importance or not? (MUST)
2. Summarize and describe an episode of the series to the reader that you find interesting,
controversial or typical of the series. The idea here is to paint a vivid picture to the reader of what
he or she may expect watching the series and how it comes to life with your description, detail,
and narrative. Keep this section under one page and be sure to only summarize what you have to
in order for the reader to know the framework and flow of an episode. (MUST)
3. Strong characters drive many series and keep viewers interested and waiting for the next episode.
Discuss characters and their relationships with each other and the viewer. Is romance or
friendship a big part of the appeal of the series, or perhaps heroes and villains drive the plot and
action? Also consider the amount of realism used in characterization? Are the characters
realistic and personal or perhaps they are fantastic and super powered and their appeals go along
with this? One could also consider how the characters do and dont fit into their stereotypes,
such as the villain with a soft side or good heart deep inside? Explore characters to unlock the
personal nature of the series. (MUST)
4. Use one visual in your essay to depict an important scene or character or image from the series to
help illustrate or emphasize a point to your reader. Your visual should be no larger than onequarter of a page. Make sure to wrap text tight around the visual and place it where it makes the
most sense (where you are discussing a point related to the visual). (MUST)
5. Use at least one of the readings (Anthony, Phillips, Sachs, Gitlin, or Nielsen) we have studied
in class from Unit #2. (MUST)
6. Step back a moment and generalize what dominant appeal drives the series: logos, pathos, or
ethos? Surely all three are used at different times, but arguing that one of these appeals is the
most common, popular or powerful could create an interesting discussion that may tie back to
your thesis. Be sure to provide examples and discussion to support your claim here. might
7. Many series will develop a theme over time or perhaps in a single episode. Themes such as
gender, marriage, growing up, relationships, GBLT, material culture (clothing, possessions,
jewelry, cars, etc..), wealth, job success, education, and so forth can be interesting discussion
points to show the range or focus of a series. Look for themes that occur more than once and
are perhaps discussed in critical reviews or by fans of the show. might
8. Do some research and discuss the people behind the series; in other words, discuss meaningful
information related to the series creators, writers, directors, producers or what have you.
Knowing something about who makes the show and how and why can figure neatly into your
thesis or help support it in a way that builds your authority. might
9. How has the series been received critically in popular publications or websites? Reviews
written by critics in newspapers and magazines should be your focus here. I would suggest trying
to find several reviews and then commenting on them together. What are the reviews saying in
general? Do the reviews seem to agree on certain key points or are you finding that they differ
quite a bit? Spend some time discussing the critical reception of the series and ideally try to link
this section to your thesis to advance it in some way. (MUST)
10. How has the series been received critically by scholars in journals and related peer reviewed
publications and materials for academic audiences? It may be a challenge to find scholarly
sources commenting and reviewing on your selected series, so dont give up and dig deep and far
using the Sawyer Library databases. If you are having no luck, you may use scholarly sources that
touch on popular TV or film series in general and link this information back to your particular
series. So you may use a broad/related source here that discusses pop culture and TV/film series
in general. We will find a few of these in class together. As above try to link this information and
material to your thesis or growing analysis to help establish your authority with your argument.
11. At some point in your essay discuss how and why the series has been successful (or not) off the
screen in terms of merchandising, spinoff series, popular culture references, art work, online fan
forums and other areas. Be sure to give examples if you can find them and discuss how this
popularity off the screen adds and/or detracts from the original series. You may want to consider
who is consuming (or buying or wearing or promoting) such off screen material and their
motivations as well as those producing and selling such material to gain insight into the series.
Nuts and Bolts
10 pages (include cover page and Works Cited page), 1 margins, 12pt Times New Roman font
include page numbers on your essay
Due Date: Weds, May 2nd , via email (MSWord .doc or .pdf)
This assignment is worth up to 25pts.max and may not be revised due to end of semester.
NOTE: A copy of your Research paper will also be forwarded to the Director of Writing to use for
assessment of the WRI program. These essay submission are anonymous meaning your name and any
identifying information will not appear on the forwarded copies, and these copies will be used for no
Research Paper PechaKucha Presentations
This assignment is an experiment of sorts as I have never required a PechaKucha in a WRI class
or any class for that matter. I am motivated to use this assignment, as I want folks to see the
interesting and clever ideas folks have worked with in their Research Project.
A timed presentation, a PechaKucha goes by very quick. The most common way these
presentations are offered is through PowerPoint slides. The key is to create thought provoking
and visually attractive slides to interest your reader and prompt discussion. You will be
discussing five slides in a very short time frame25 seconds per slideso realize you will be
offering highlights from your essay and/or research.
In terms of time, you have 5 slides that will be visible for 25 seconds each. Thus, you have about
2 minutes to present your slides and discuss them. This leaves roughly 3 minutes for discussion. I
am happy to ask a question to get you going, but I hope the class jumps in. at 4:45 seconds I will
simply call TIME and you are done and the next class member is on!
As many of you may not have your Research Paper complete, one can also see this presentation
as in progress and offer ideas you are working with or refining and could benefit from other
views or opinions. You could even present ideas or perspectives that you did not pursue in your
essay and see how the discussion goes.
Please email me your five PowerPoint slides the day BEFORE your presentation. I will save
them to a flash drive and will have them all loaded and ready to go on presentation day.
This will be a quick hitting assignment and I think it will be fun. Also, it may help spark ideas
and imagination for folks still working on their Research Paper and perhaps facilitate dialogue
between paper writers or inspire one to develop a section or refine ones thinking.
There is no formal grade for this assignment like an essay or journal, but I will consider your
completed presentation and attendance on both days in your participation grade. So please do
show up both days and be prepared.
If you are running into writers block or need suggestions, just email me. I can offer help and
even slide topics perhaps.
I will offer a sample PechaKucha presentation next week, so you can get a feel for this type of
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