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Case Study

Story visualization and chill

(Infographic created by Randall Munroe at XKCD)

Story visualization is the cool new cousin of data visualization. As movies and series increase in complexity, keeping track of all the characters becomes a challenge (albeit an often entertaining one). The story visualization is a response to this trend – a new way to get a bird’s eye view of the narrative landscape. Among other possibilities, these graphics can offer enticing outlines of complex plots, character relationships, and dialogue sentiment. We’ve curated a list of impressive examples, and we’re working on a viz of our own for next month.
 
Mapping Out the Marvel Cinematic Universe
 
The Marvel Universe boasts thousands of characters, many with stories that confusingly weave in and out of different movies. This visualization by the Straits Times in Singapore outlines who’s who and whether they’re dead or alive.
 
Movie Character Interactions in Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Jurassic Park, 12 Angry Men, and Primer
 
Here’s an especially offbeat and different type of story world graphic.
 
A Collection from TV Pop Culture
 
iDashboards labels this a list of data visualizations, but they’re so content-themed that they could be story-visualizations.
 
The True *True* Story
 
This visualization from Information is Beautiful explores the scene-by-scene verity of historical fiction films like Hidden Figures, Lion, Spotlight, and the Big Short. Its clarity is impressive and the data it presents is unexpected.