Hybrid heroes: Cultural hybridization in Thai action adventure films from 1997 to 2010

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This paper studied cultural hybridization as reflected in hero characters from 30 Thai action adventure films produced and released during 1997–2010. It was hypothesized that the characterization of the heroes in the action adventure films in question had been influenced by features of heroes in foreign films. Such features had been mixed with Thai values and local beliefs so as to create Thai hybrid hero characters. These hybrid characters demonstrated the distinctiveness and dynamics of Thai action adventure films. It was found that cultural hybridization is presented through the Thai hero characters' images, gender identity, and roles leading to the emergence of three important types of Thai hybrid hero: 1) local Thai cowboy heroes, 2) Thai martial arts heroes, and 3) Thai necromancer superheroes. These heroes are clear evidence of an adaptation and cultural hybridization between international films' hero characters and certain elements in Thai society being legends, local beliefs, and the values of masculinity. Moreover, these hybrid heroes reflect the flow of globalization into Thai society and the process of localization to creatively respond to the flux in global culture.




Na Nongkhai, K., & Phakdeephasook, S. (2017). Hybrid heroes: Cultural hybridization in Thai action adventure films from 1997 to 2010. Kasetsart Journal of Social Sciences, 38(3), 187–195. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.kjss.2016.09.002

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