Sunday 01st of October 2023


The Impact of My Brilliant Friend on Twitter: a Catalyst for a… Brilliant Digital Affiliation?


Nikita Lobanov e Anna Zingaro, Università di Bologna pdf_icon_30x30

nikita.lobanov2(at), anna.zingaro2(at)

Abstract: In the last decade, TV entertainment has been shaped by the effortlessness of audiences to provide comments, criticism and support for programs on social media in real time. Users now have the potential to mobilize other users in a previously unseen fashion, spontaneously gathering in online communities, digital tribes and geek circles. Through the posting of tweets, fan users are able to convey multiple and chaotically arranged meanings that are often humorous and channel the will of loosely organized online communities. Therefore, the success of a TV series is now often judged by its reception on social media. This paper will discuss the impact of these elements unfolded on Twitter in the first four days of the debut of My Brilliant Friend, a TV series based on the eponymous saga by Elena Ferrante. First, we will discuss the language of the fan-users of this series will be examined, in order to determine the syntactical structures and the lexicon that characterize their written communication. Second, the authors will discuss, how fan-users of My Brilliant Friend use humor and in-group moral values, to focus on their identity and fan “hotness”. We will examine an exploratory sample of fan users to reflect instances of ridicule of different issues, from characters to the localization, (i.e. the intralingual translation from Neapolitan into Italian, the morality of illegal streaming against official HBO channels etc.), subsequent use of lexical and syntactical elements to reproduce the features of a orality in written language and, by doing so, to foster instant communication and participation in the in-group (such as, asking questions to the other users, and re-introducing previously discussed issues, etc.). Lately, it seems that users organize themselves through audiences made up by many brilliant “friends”.


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