Framing the Moon Baby: The Haunted Reality of the Animated Form

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Abstract

In February 2019, the tabloid press headlines captured a general reaction to Andrew Davenport’s new animated television series Moon and Me with headlines such as, “’Haunting’ new CBeebies show Moon and Me is giving parents nightmares” (Pemberton and Pemberton, 2020). In this article I seek to explore what it is within Moon and Me that reveals the uncanny hidden within the animated form. Wells describes animation as having the “ready capacity to facilitate ‘the uncanny’ by effacing the imagined and the real” (Wells, 1998, p. 48). Animators are creating the ‘illusion of life’ from something inanimate, dead in a sense already. The ‘spectre’ of death that hides within the animated form and brings us to a place of, as described by Crawte “the collapse of borders, a blurring between supposed opposites and troubling visions of fears long repressed becoming manifest” (Crawte, 2017, p. 1). Moon and Me exposes ‘in the raw’ something further. It brings to the fore animation’s uncanny and unusual relationship with time, the unheimlich mirror of the animated form and the revealing, ultimately, of the automaton within.
Original languageEnglish
JournalThe Uncanny and the Afterlife of the Gothic
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 5 Mar 2021

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