Posted 31 мая 2022,, 12:55

Published 31 мая 2022,, 12:55

Modified 25 декабря 2022,, 20:54

Updated 25 декабря 2022,, 20:54

Historical "cheese", or what fashion series are talking about

31 мая 2022, 12:55
Марина Шаповалова
Popular series on historical topics, but having nothing to do with real history, are filmed when the ideological course of the state coincides with the mass popular demand.

Marina Shapovalova, writer

Many years ago - I sometimes turned on the TV in the background then - noticing something tasteless-costume on the screen with a glance, I hear the names: Manefa, Flenushka ... Oh, Melnikov, who is Pechersky, “In the Forests”? .. A long process of comprehending what he saw I will not describe here, only the result: the authors of the series "managed" to turn the chthonic gloom of the literary basis into a vulgar soap popular print. And why - that's interesting.

I then in my LiveJournal described in detail my, to put it mildly, impression of what I saw. And I had a lot of subscribers, the text sold out, and it was accidentally read by a person invited even before filming to work on costumes. He told me interesting details.

In the original idea, it turns out that both the costumes and the scenery corresponded to the historical truth. Plus or minus - they were, perhaps, brighter and more interesting than those of the Trans-Volga Old Believers, but without spreading cranberries. The costumes even had time to send off. After that, the customers reviewed the work done with acid mines on the faces and said that all this is not necessary. Fuck, they say, load the viewer with this gloomy boredom. The costumes were thrown away, the artists hired were fired, and everything was done beautifully. My casual acquaintance did not know anything about the reworking of the script, but with this, everything was clear to me anyway. Melnikov's novel was completely emasculated, diluting the main storylines with snot on sweet syrup.

I remembered this story during the triumphal procession on the world screens of the Turkish TV series "The Magnificent Century".

The theme is my favourite. Few things I studied with such diligence as the Ottoman Empire from the time of Suleiman Kanuni. And, of course, the luxurious costumes of the alleged inhabitants of the harem and the Top Kapa Palace immediately reminded me of the TV series In the Woods. The same way of presenting the "beautiful past".

And now - my answer to the question "why?" On the example of not a Russian, but a Turkish series, which has gained maximum audience success.

The key figure in Turkish history for decades and until recently was Kemal Atatürk. With all the known contradictions of the era, he personified Turkey's aspirations for a common European future. The imperial past highlighted this trend with a golden background, but everything that historically connected the country and people with the global civilizational context was seen as important in it. The reign and conquests of Suleiman consistently fit into this perception, since this great sultan extended his influence over almost half of Europe and was the most important actor in fateful historical events. No less, but no more. Ataturk, on the other hand, broke the fetters of the archaic, which slowed down the country, largely depriving it of its well-deserved leading positions on the world stage. He, as it were, restored the decaying connection of times, cleared the rubble and sent Turkey to where it belongs - to the vanguard of mankind. In the "club of great powers" that determine the world order.

The "unpredictable past", certainly great and special, enters the agenda when something does not add up in the present. By the end of the 20th century, the Turks suddenly discovered that they were not considered Europeans in a rather offensive way. That they are neglected by the very peoples who for centuries lived under the rule of the Ottoman sultans. To whom dizzying social elevators were opened in the empire, and familiarization with the culture widespread in it gave many benefits! ..

Those who are rejected, it turns out, have their own pride - the great past is proof of this. And interpret it - oh, surprise! - can be different.

“The uncouth savage-schemer Alexandra Anastasia Lisowska”, impudent and vile, is extracted from him as an unfortunate root cause of all subsequent troubles: after all, it was she who, having bewitched the greatest sultan and insidiously taking advantage of his trust, deprived the empire of the future. She slandered the most worthy heir, the son of a hated rival, and achieved his execution. And she brought her mediocre drunkard son to the throne. With him began the "geopolitical catastrophe" of degradation, and then the collapse of the empire. Why be surprised: all evil is from European foreigners, by their nature low and ungrateful, who always hated everything Turkish. Turkish traditions were alien to them - they broke them. They did not appreciate the greatness of the country that gave them everything - and undermined it with their pernicious influence ...

The interpretation is not new. Although it has been refuted for four hundred years by Turkish intellectuals for nothing. After Ataturk, the legend of Alexandra Anastasia Lisowska the “schemer” lost its relevance for a while, but now it was needed again. Together with all the "spiritual bonds" in the form of a magnificent harem life.

All the spreading and colorful "historical" wampuks - they are talking about it. This is how they “do it beautifully” when the ideological course coincides with the popular demand.

It would be nice to know that such a beautiful "historical" is being filmed in China now.