Disruption and continuity on telenovela with the surge of a new hybrid prime-time fictional serial: The super series

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The Latin American telenovela genre has enjoyed a long-lasting hegemonic position in prime-time television across the region, and particularly within US Spanish-language television market. However, in the last several years, Spanish-language national television networks, as well as their prime-time telenovela product, are being challenged by the new digital and mobile media landscape. Television networks have deployed a variety of strategies to better accommodate to new audiences’ consumption routines in a digital age. This article focuses on a particular moment of disruption – and continuity –, which has been a game changer for US Hispanic television and has transformed the face of fictional serial (telenovelas) in prime time. The surge in popularity of a telenovela subgenre originating in Colombia and widely adopted by US television corporations, known as narconovela, has transformed the telenovela genre/format, prompting industry professionals to initiate new institutional discourses aimed to mark these texts as super series, and in doing so labelling them as a new type of genre. Super series are an excellent case study for understanding the dialectic notion of disruption and continuity both in television studies and the television industry.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)204-221
Number of pages18
JournalCritical Studies in Television
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2019



  • narconovela
  • super series
  • Telenovelas
  • US Hispanic television

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Communication

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