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Vance Joy - Riptide


A level Media Studies Mind Map on Vance Joy - Riptide, created by Harry Barrett on 01/10/2019.
Harry Barrett
Mind Map by Harry Barrett, updated more than 1 year ago
Harry Barrett
Created by Harry Barrett over 3 years ago

Resource summary

Vance Joy - Riptide
  1. Product Context
    1. Vance Joy is an Australian singer-songwriter signed to Atlantic records (a subsidiary of major label, Warner). His music can be categorised as fitting into indie folk-pop genre
      1. Riptide was Vance Joy’s first single to be released in the USA, following his debut EP, “God Loves You When You’re Dancing”. It became a platinum selling single
        1. The video was directed by Dimitri Basil and Laura Gorun and has had nearly 100 million views on YouTube
        2. Media Language
          1. Codes and Conventions
            1. Whilst it is a convention of the music video form to have song lyrics interpreted on screen, the overt and deliberate way the lyrics are interpreted in this music video might be subverting this convention
              1. The opening line “I was scared of dentists and the dark” is interpreted explicitly with a shot of a female looking “scared” with a metallic contraption in her mouth that suggests she is in a dentist’s chair and followed by a shot of a light swinging in a darkened room
                1. This overt graphical representation of the lyrics is largely repeated throughout the video. Consider whether this is following or subverting the convention of lyrical interpretation
                2. The music video seems to explicitly reference feature films
                  1. The opening shot makes use of cinematic style credits and information about the music is presented with a title at the bottom of the screen
                    1. This title is graphically similar to a “billing block” or “credit block” which is often seen on film posters or in trailers
                    2. The video frequently references the Western and Thriller genres (and arguably the hipster style of Wes Anderson films), but most notably uses Horror genre iconography, e.g. females repeatedly dragged off screen by unseen forces and a character going missing in a dark graveyard
                3. Representation
                  1. Women in the video are repeatedly presented as an object to be watched
                    1. In one shot a woman with her back to the camera undresses out of her swimming costume and there are a number of instances where we see disembodied, isolated sections of women’s bodies such as bare feet running away or feminine hands being dragged out of shot
                      1. Consider whether these images of women are sexualised and offered to audiences for their pleasure (scopophilia) or presented in a way that challenges the sexualisation of women in many music videos
                        1. Explore the lip-synch sections where a woman sings the lyrics of the song into a microphone. At first she has immaculate make-up and is framed and lit in a flattering way arguably conforming to social norms of beauty and glamour associated with mainstream media texts
                          1. As we repeatedly return to this character she becomes increasingly dishevelled, her make-up smudges and her expression becomes more and more vacant as she sings “the words wrong”. Discuss the extent to which this representation challenges gender representation in music video and how it sits with the other representations of women in the video
                        2. Along with the representations of women the music video also presents a number of scenes that offer images of violence
                          1. Such as a female hand being stabbed by a knife and a gun being pointed off screen
                            1. The lip-synching woman clutches at her own neck and we see what seems to be blood over her hand
                          2. Theoretical Perspectives
                            1. Gauntlett
                              1. Use Gauntlett to explore complex and diverse representations in the music video - his concept of the pick and mix seems particularly relevant to the style of the video which constructs a range of different stimuli that the audience are invited to interpret
                                1. The video rejects singular, straightforward messages and instead invites a variety of different responses and interpretations
                                2. bell hooks
                                  1. Hooks could be used as a stimulus to explore the seemingly contradictory messages about gender in the video
                                    1. Is the video objectifying women in an ironic or knowing way or is it instead feeding into the oppression of women in a patriarchal society?
                                    2. Use hooks’ position that feminism is a struggle to end sexist/ patriarchal oppression to ask whether the video is part of that struggle or part of the oppression
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