Despite the increasing number and variety of older characters appearing in film, television, comics, and other popular culture, much of the understanding of these figures has been limited to outdated stereotypes of aging. These include depictions of frailty, resistance to modern life, and mortality. More importantly, these stereotypes influence the daily lives of aging adults, as well as how younger generations perceive and interact with older individuals. In light of our graying population and the growing diversity of portrayals of older characters in popular culture, it is important to examine how we understand aging.

In Aging Heroes: Growing Old in Popular Culture, Norma Jones and Bob Batchelor present a collection of essays that address the increasing presence of characters that simultaneously manifest and challenge the accepted stereotypes of aging. The contributors to this volume explore representations in television programs, comic books, theater, and other forms of media. The chapters include examinations of aging male and female actors who take on leading roles in such movies as Gran Torino, Grudge Match, Escape Plan, Space Cowboys, Taken, and The Big Lebowski as well as TheExpendables, Red, and X-Men franchises. Other chapters address perceptions of masculinity, sexuality, gender, and race as manifested by such cultural icons as Superman, Wonder Woman, Danny Trejo, Helen Mirren, Betty White, Liberace, and Tyler Perry’s Madea.

With multi-disciplinary and accessible essays that encompass the expanding spectrum of aging and related stereotypes, this book offers a broader range of new ways to understand, perceive, and think about aging. Aging Heroes will be of interest to scholars of film, television, gender studies, women’s studies, sociology, aging studies, and media studies, as well as to general readers.

Cult Pop Culture: How the Fringe Became Mainstream is a three-volume collection of original essays that examines cult pop culture topics, the ones fans love, obsess about, and can't get enough of.

Cult Pop Culture is the first collection dedicated to the quirky, offbeat aspects of American popular culture that people have loved, enjoyed, (and in some cases) worshiped over the last 50 years. By examining the people and subjects we hold most dear, this three-volume set offers deep insights into what Americans think, feel, and cherish.

Organized by subject, the collection enables readers to focus on a given topic or compare different subjects across cult phenomenon.

  • Volume One covers film and television topics
  • Volume Two examines music and literature
  • Volume Three explores sports, clubs, and the cult industry

Through this investigation of sublime, transcendent, and idiosyncratic trends, readers will learn more about iconic individuals, topics, and subjects that form the vast underbelly of American culture. By revealing how tightly interwoven cult topics are with the public's broader notion of popular culture, the collection underscores the blurry line between normal and abnormal, grandiose and degradation.

Although many pop-culture sets exist, this one stands out for its focus on cult status and placing pop culture within the greater American experience. Appropriate for and likely appealing to patrons of public, school, and academic libraries.
— Library Journal

Pop culture is the heart and soul of America, a unifying bridge across time bringing together generations of diverse backgrounds. Whether looking at the bright lights of the Jazz Age in the 1920s, the sexual revolution and the rock-n-roll revolution of the 1960s, or the thriving social networking websites of today, each period in America's cultural history develops its own unique take on the qualities define our lives.

American Pop: Popular Culture Decade by Decade is the most comprehensive reference on American popular culture by decade ever assembled, beginning with the 1900s up through today. The four-volume set examines the fascinating trends across decades and eras by shedding light on the experiences of Americans young and old, rich and poor, along with the influences of arts, entertainment, sports, and other cultural forces.

Whether a pop culture aficionado or a student new to the topic, American Pop provides readers with an engaging look at American culture broken down into discrete segments, as well as analysis that gives insight into societal movements, trends, fads, and events that propelled the era and the nation.