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Overview

A fascinating analysis of the psychology behind the popular TV series Supernatural.

Following the adventures of two brothers who investigate deeply strange and paranormal mysteries in their never-ending road trip, the TV show Supernatural has many fans eager to better understand the psychology behind the series’ themes and characters. Through 20 essays, this collection examines such issues as

  • The role grief and trauma play in the protagonists’ lives
  • The importance of music to the narrative
  • What motivates someone to hunt monsters and why we want to believe in magic
  • The various archangels and archetypes depicted
  • How people can cope with tragedy, loss, addiction, and fear to become heroes who do the right thing
  • The dynamics of fandom: how fans relate to the narrative, characters, and actors, and continue to engage with series through fanfic, social media, and other practices

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781454926610
Publisher: Sterling
Publication date: 11/07/2017
Series: Popular Culture Psychology Series , #8
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 129,508
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.80(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Travis Langley, PhD, is a psychology professor at Henderson State University, the author of Batman and Psychology (Wiley), and the volume editor of The Walking Dead Psychology, Star Wars Psychology, Game of Thrones Psychology, and the rest of the Popular Culture Psychology series (all Sterling). He speaks regularly on media and heroism at universities, conferences, and popular-culture conventions including San Diego Comic-Con, New York Comic Con, and others throughout the world. Necessary Evil: Super-Villains of DC Comics and other films have featured him as an expert interviewee, and the documentary Legends of the Knight spotlighted how he uses fiction to teach real psychology. Psychology Today carries his blog “Beyond Heroes and Villains,” and he is one of the 10 most popular psychologists on Twitter with over 100,000 followers: @superherologist.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments: The Family That Hunts Together Travis Langley Lynn S. Zubbrnis vii

Foreword: Born to Fire Jonathan Maberry xiii

Introduction: The Word and the Why Mark R. Pellegrino 1

Part I Flesh and Blood 7

1 The SPN Family: The Psychology of Fandom Lynn S. Zubbrnis 9

2 Family by Choice or by Blood Elizabeth Kus Christine Dickson Janina Scaklet 31

3 Losing One Parent is Hard; Losing Them All is Hell Lara Taylor Kester 41

4 Carrying on After Parental Loss Denisse Morales 55

5 The Good, the Bad, and the Balanced: Q & A with Felicia Day and Amanda Tapping Travis Langley Jenna Busch 67

Morgue File I Denial Travis Langley 79

Part II Lock and Load 85

6 A Trunk Full of Defense Mechanisms Travis Langley 87

7 Super Traumatized: Managing PTSD in a Supernatural World Travis Adams Janina Scarlet 105

8 Lifting the Veil: Effects of Childhood Trauma on the Mind, Body, and Soul Leanpra Parris 117

9 Hunting for Identity Melanie Boysen Wind Goodfriend 133

Morgue File II Anger Travis Langley 145

Part III Secrets and Lies 151

10 Bro Moments: Communication between Men Belly San Juan Paul VanPortfliet 153

11 The Family Addiction: Saving People, Hunting Things Justine Mastin William Blake Erickson 163

12 Crossroads and a River of Crap: How Killing Affects Those Who Kill Stephan Schaffrath Colt J. Blunt 175

13 Making a Deal with the Demon: Having Emotions Means Having Your Soul Janina Scarlet Jenna Busch 187

Morgue File III Bargaining Travis Langley 199

Part IV Above and Below 203

14 Personal Purgatories, Mental Illness, and a Manual of Lore Travis Langley 205

15 Going Through Hell: How Torture Affects the Tormentor and the Tormented Justine Mastin Colt J. Blunt 219

16 From Heaven to Hell: An Examination of Leadership Style Jennifer Bonds-Raacke John Raacke 231

17 The Hero's Road Trip Larisa A. Gapski Justine Mastin 243

Morgue File IV Depression Travis Langeley 255

Part V Pact and Fantasy 259

18 Cognitive Biases: Sometimes Seeing Isn't Believing Erin Currie 261

10 Wild Folklore: Driving Through Normal with "Two Boys, an Old Drunk, and a Fallen Angel" J. Scott Jordan 275

20 Natural Supernaturalism: Why Believe in Magic and Monsters? Eric D. Wesselmann James S. Nairne 289

21 The Message is in the Music: The Psychological Impact of Music in Supernatural Susan Nylander Amanda Taylor Lynn S. Zubernis 307

Morgue File V Acceptance Travis Langley 321

Final Word: Peace Travis Langley 327

About the Editor 333

About the Co-Editor 334

About the Contributors 335

Index 344

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