Identity and Nostalgia on the Small Screen
5 Ireland according to "The Savage Eye": Shifting Satirical Paradigms and the Reconfiguration of National Stereotypes (Thierry Robin)
Thierry Robin 5 Ireland According to The Savage Eye: Shifting Satirical Paradigms and the Reconfiguration of National Stereotypes abstract The Savage Eye (RTÉ, 2009–2014) is a satirical programme whose original and caustic tone stands out from the recent production in Irish entertainment. The purpose of this article is to analyse its original hybrid format and to show how the series reveals shifting national stereotypes of Irish identity in the twenty-first century, relying on social psychologists Peter Glick and Susan Fiske’s ‘stereotype content model’ theory. The Savage Eye points to the contemporary evolution of stereotypes of Irishness, following the reconfiguration of society’s current challenges, from religious disaffection to immigration, high technology, language policies, and the demise of the Celtic Tiger. Introduction The Savage Eye is an Irish satirical show originally broadcast on mainstream public TV channel RTÉ Two from 2009 to 2014.1 The show comprised four short series of six to seven weekly episodes aired after 10 p.m., as well as Christmas specials. It was produced by Bl!nder F!lms, a production company known for its cutting edge material, be it social, political or artistic – the docu- mentary on Irish gay icon and drag-artist Pandora-Panti-Bliss, The Queen of 1 The Savage Eye, written by David McSavage, John Colleary, Patrick McDonnell, Dermot McMorrow (Bl!nder F!lms/RTÉ, 23 November 2009–9 June 2014). 92 Thierry Robin Ireland, released in 2015 to coincide with the referendum on gay marriage,2 is an example of Bl!nder F!lms’ creative and political...
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