Aelita Comes Down to the Earth. Television Agents in Soviet Films, 1950s‒1980s


Maria Zhukova


The proliferation of a new technological medium—television—led to the emergence of a new kind of screen hero: a TV-man. It also saw the emergence of various characters involved in television for various reasons: owners of television sets, avid viewers, as well as people who wittingly or unwittingly ended up on the small screen. I call these characters ‘television agents’, and the following article will outline the shifting roles of television in Soviet cinema through analysing the changing image of the television agent, which occurred largely due to their structural links with other cultural media such as cinema and poetry. Particular attention will be paid to the evident discrepancy between the reception of television in the official Soviet print media propagating TV as a “powerful tool of the communist education“ and artistic discourse (film) deconstructing this statement.



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