#3 (Basic plots)Research: Convention of Fantasy Genre

To know more about fantasy, we may know more about conventional fantasy, we either choose to follow or challenge, but the basic plot is the frame for fantasy as I consider.

The website that is useful and detail:
The Seven Basic Plots


Christopher Booker’s The Seven Basic Plots is a long book. It’s on the order of War and Peace for thickness. It also gets a bit repetitive at times, but if you can slog through the material, you’re rewarded with a good understanding of the seven basic plots.


  1. overcoming the monster

there is a threat in the land and Hero is going to save the kingdom or his/her homeland, which is considered as monster, not an alien from outside the world, that is sci-fi.

e.g. Lord of the rings (more on the post Film research: Lord of the rings)


2. Rags to riches

This may be the feature of fantasy i have mentioned on the post Research: conventional features in Fantasy – A happy ending! Like Disney films, they tend to create a reunite ending in the family or a princess being bullied by step-mother finally met her prince.

They give audiences a conclusion, do not hang them there, which satisfy expectation of audiences. And it also delivers a message that good things come to good people.

Some of do challenge this rule though,

e.g. Into the wood, a dark fairy tale


3. the Quest

the process of being a real hero, to look for things he needs, always with the helper, and conquer different sorts of difficulties on the way; the villain tries to stop them.


4. Voyage and return

there are two situations might be referred to ‘Voyage’:

a) it can be Hero has already been in a magic world, but the evil is far away or the magic elements he needs is far so he has to travel

b) it can be Hero falls into a magic world, which is a priceless travel, a new world

Both of a) and b) shows the coming of age style so they grow after triumphs.

e.g. Alice in Wonderland (more on the post Film research: Alice in Wonderland)


5. Comedy

Most of fantasy, they tend to have a positive protagonist, a Hero, and it comes to a happy ending.


6. Tragedy

the protagonist is the evil, and it is falling into dark slowly, then it ends up with the death of him/her as a happy ending.


7. Rebirth

It is a more optimistic form based on Tragedy, the evil is pulled out of the mire at the end.




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