East Asian Perspective in Transmedia Storytelling | The Storyteller Who Crosses Boundaries in Korean Reality Television: Transmedia Storytelling in New Journey to the West
The Korean reality TV franchise New Journey to the West (NJW) is an illustrative case to unpack how the Korean media industry has offered viewers transmedia and intertextual experiences in the realm of reality television. Korean reality show directors, who have acknowledged their profoundly reshaped, collaborative, and interdependent relationship with consumers in an era of convergence culture, attempt to fragment everyday realities throughout multiple media texts. The current article focuses on Young-seok Na, a television director who created NJW, revamping characters and episodes from his previous works, coalescing Korean television channels and online streaming sites, and integrating a Chinese classic and its Japanese manga adaptation into the Korean reality show franchise. By analyzing the six seasons of NJW and its spin-off series, Kang’s Kitchen and Youth Over Flowers—Winner, this article proposes that the aura of a reality show director as a storyteller is essential in producing a regionally formulated transmedia franchise.