The haunted seas of british television: nation, environment and horror

Fryers, Mark (2021). The haunted seas of british television: nation, environment and horror. Gothic Nature, II pp. 131–155.



Historically, the sea holds symbolic power within British culture, a space of imperial triumph and mastery over nature. The British coastline, similarly, has served as both a secure defence and a space of freedom and abandonment. However, since the decline of both the empire and the maritime industries, these certainties have eroded, along with the physical coastline itself. Subsequently, these spaces have become haunted, returning them somewhat to more primal conceptions of the natural world. This article examines how television, as the cultural exponent of choice in Britain during the same period, has provided the perfect medium to explore the gothic seas: an environment of terror and unease, fear and uncertainty. From Jonathan Miller’s Whistle and I’ll Come to You (1968) to Remember Me (2014), this article details how the appearance of the gothic sea in British culture hastens a broader examination of national myth, virtues and values.

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