Fargo is a crime drama anthology series with four seasons so far, the latest of which started to air in the U.S. end of September 2020. The first season premiered in 2014 on FX and was loosely based on the 1996 film Fargo directed by the Coen Brothers. Joel and Ethan Coen act as executive producers for the series along with Noah Hawley who is also the lead writer for all seasons. Typically for an anthology series, each season narrates a concluded story, set in a different time and location. Each season features a different cast of characters, although there are some characters who show up in several seasons which allows for interconnections between the different seasons. Although season 2-4 are not directly based on the movie Fargo, they convey intertextual/interfilmic references to several Coen Brothers movies. Among other aspects, my presentation will investigate these interconnections between movies and series, look at the genre “crime drama” and try to find explanations why this is one of the most popular genres. Moreover, I will consider possible functions of the black humor which is an essential feature of the series.
Bärbel Schlimbach, M.A., is a PhD candidate in North American Literary and Cultural Studies at Saarland University / Germany. Her PhD-Project utilizes theoretical approaches from Critical Regional Studies, Post-Western Studies, Gender Studies and Border Studies to analyze literatures and films from the Post-Western genre to investigate their innovative potential with respect to identity constructions, imaginary Wests as well as constructions of national narratives. She is the co-editor of (Pop-)Cultures on the Move: Transnational Identifications and Cultural Exchange between East and West (2019).