Monday, 2 July 2012

"The Great Escape" - Temporary Veterinary

So yes, this is on the internets now. Copyright strike in 3...

This is my animated storyboard for a music video of "The Great Escape" by We Are Scientists, as if it is being performed by a fictional band called Temporary Veterinary.

Information about the technical production side of the video is here.

In regards to Goodwin's music video theory:

Relationship between visuals and lyrics
I've gone with a bit of a conceptual link here; the song is about being unable to face up to challenges and therefore resorting to running away. It's as though there is a block of some kind - in the same way the spiders in this video act as a block. As mentioned here the spiders are representing darkness and fear, which in turn highlights the corruption in the mind of the narrator.

I ended up not going with the grey gradient effect I mentioned before; but instead placing them in what appears to be an infinite grey void (yes, this is intentional as opposed to being the product of artistic limitations!) to show that they are stuck in this endless insanity, and that there is no sign of reality in sight.

Relationship between visuals and music
The song is fairly heavy and dark toned, and the video is set in a dark grey void to further enforce this. There are several cuts based on what happens on screen, for example, we see a lot of movement around the guitarist during the guitar solo, and the lights during the first part of the video flash with the beat (and stay consistent between shots, which made the whole thing take a lot longer to put together). The cuts slow down noticeably during a slower part of the song.

Genre characteristics
This is especially apparent in regards to the mise-en-scene:

- Lighting: Part of the video contains stage lights which flash on and off quickly, which occurs quite a lot in performance-based rock videos - though in this case the flashes are occuring as a way of alluding to being on stage (as the last bit of 'reality' left in the narrator's mind before being switched off by the spiders) as opposed to actually being set on a stage.
- Props: They have instruments typically associated with rock performance - a guitar, a bass guitar and an acoustic drum kit.
- Location: Discussed this earlier but it is relevant here - it's set in an endless grey void. Whilst audiences don't generally make an automatic association between rock music and fantasy locations, quite a few videos (such as the Iron Man video by Black Sabbath - below) show the artist performing in these kinds of environments through set designs/green screens.

There are also a few sections with fast cuts, which are often used in rock music to highlight the tone of the music.

Artist close-ups
Lots of. Each band member has multiple close-ups individually, and the band are on screen at all times. These are typically used to get the artist's image across to the end viewer, as a way of developing their appeal. If we go by Dyer's theory of the 'star' being an image which has been carefully constructed by the industry, I see the close-ups in music videos acting as a way of promoting this image to newer consumers, whilst grabbing the attention of those who have already bought into this image as they now can see that this new media product offers more of said star.

Not apparent, from what I can see.

Intertextual references
The concept of an outbreak of spiders could be seen as a reference to the 1990 film Arachnophobia. Is also worth mentioning that the band name is a reference to this fantastic song:


1 comment:

  1. Relationship between v and l - could you explain the narrative / role of the spdiers a little more clearly? I know what you mean but I was there from the start listening to you develop the idea. Others might not get it - more detail = more chance for people to realsie what a cool idea it was. 'Cos it was a very cool idea. Really simple, really effective.

    GC - you mention mise-en-scene so pull apart each elemtn of mise-en-scene and say how you've tried to meet the genre characteristics of msie-en-scene in a bit more detail.

    ACU - why? Try and use the term 'star image' in your answer.