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Joss Whedon's Names: The Deeper Meanings behind Buffy, Angel, Firefly, Dollhouse, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Cabin in the Woods, The Avengers, Doctor Horrible, In Your Eyes, Comics and More Paperback – May 7, 2014
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About the Author
Valerie Estelle Frankel is the author of many nonfiction books: Buffy and the Heroine’s Journey From Girl to Goddess: The Heroine’s Journey in Myth and Legend Katniss the Cattail: An Unauthorized Guide to Names and Symbols in The Hunger Games The Many Faces of Katniss Everdeen: Exploring the Heroine of The Hunger Games Harry Potter, Still Recruiting: An Inner Look at Harry Potter Fandom Teaching with Harry Potter Myths and Motifs in The Mortal Instruments Winter is Coming: Symbols, Portents, and Hidden Meanings in A Game of Thrones Once a lecturer at San Jose State University, she’s a frequent speaker on fantasy, myth, pop culture, and the heroine’s journey and can be found at http://vefrankel.com.
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Top customer reviews
This wasn’t what I was expecting, and unfortunately it wasn’t a pleasant surprise. Came into this hoping for some insight as to why Joss chose these names, rather than just the meanings, something you can find in any baby book on the internet. There were valiant attempts to link the name origins to the characters, but it was all guesswork; maybe Joss simply liked the name or chose it because that was what his best friend as a kid was called. Since it is nothing but guesswork, there’s absolutely no insight, nothing new to be learned here. Ultimately a disappointment.
What is in a name? Is it just a jumble of letters, a badge rich in semblance and meaning to carry forth in life. On the other hand, for the unlucky few, is it something we’ll never know quite why our parents decided to punish us with so shortly after birth. Whether we love them or hate them, the names are one of the first labels we use in trying to understand the world around us. A given name can hold even more weight in the world of fiction when anything can allude to a deeper meaning … or be just a random choice off a baby names list late night before a deadline (it does happen).
In this book, the author tries to put the pieces together and fathom the methods to the madness that is names in the Whedonverse. Her ideas and theories on the repetitive styles of character names spread out over the many works of Joss Whedon were interesting to read. I can see that there was real effort into the gathering and analyzing of all the information presented. Nevertheless, I do wish there was more information from Joss himself about his choices. Even a comment or two from some of the actors who helped bring the characters to life. These things would have garnered a higher rating and a stronger recommendation to all the whedonites out there looking for more about their favorite fictional cohorts.
** I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. **