Narratives in Music Videos
A2 Media Research
Task
 In this task, I will be researching how narratives are
constructed in music videos in the electronic dance
music...
What is narrative?
Narrative noun The narrative is how a plot or story is told.
Narrative Theories
 Propp’s theory – characters fit into a “character
type,” such as hero, villain, princess, donor, et...
Skrillex – First of the Year
 An example of a linear, single-strand music video (it follows
the single story between th...
Skrillex – First of the Year
 The video is fairly dark, revolving around the idea of
killing paedophiles with demonic p...
Porter Robinson - Language
 Another example of a linear, single-strand music
video (following the female character thro...
Porter Robinson - Language
 Using Propp’s theory, we can loosely identify the
dogs as the villains of the narrative, ch...
David Guetta - Titanium
 Another example of a linear, single-strand music video (it
follows the story of the young boy ...
David Guetta - Titanium
 Again, in regards to Toderov’s theory, the music
video starts without a clear equilibrium, and...
Our Video
 It is a common theme among videos in the “EDM”
genre to have a linear and single-strand narrative. I
would ...
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Narratives in Music Videos

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Published on: Mar 3, 2016
Published in: Social Media      
Source: www.slideshare.net


Transcripts - Narratives in Music Videos

  • 1. Narratives in Music Videos A2 Media Research
  • 2. Task  In this task, I will be researching how narratives are constructed in music videos in the electronic dance music genre.  I will do this by observing different music videos and using narrative theories to deconstruct them.  This is to give us an idea of how to structure our music video when we plan and produce it.
  • 3. What is narrative? Narrative noun The narrative is how a plot or story is told.
  • 4. Narrative Theories  Propp’s theory – characters fit into a “character type,” such as hero, villain, princess, donor, etc.  Toderov’s theory – narratives progress through 5 stages (equilibrium, disruption, recognition, attempt to repair, new equilibrium).  Barthes’ theory – problems can be solved through action or an enigma.  Strauss’ theory – narratives include binary/absolute opposites.
  • 5. Skrillex – First of the Year  An example of a linear, single-strand music video (it follows the single story between the two characters).  At first, we are given two binary opposites (Strauss) – a creepy old man and an innocent young girl.  The old man is assumed to be a paedophile due to the use of props such as the rag and chloroform. This means that he would be a villain in Propp’s theory. However, the following actions of the girl (using demonic powers to kill the man) are too extreme for her to be considered a hero or any other character type.
  • 6. Skrillex – First of the Year  The video is fairly dark, revolving around the idea of killing paedophiles with demonic powers. While paedophilia is a problem to be overcome at the start of the video, the extreme consequences of the little girls actions make it hard to view the situation as “resolved.”  For the same reasons, it is also hard to relate the narrative to Toderov’s theory.
  • 7. Porter Robinson - Language  Another example of a linear, single-strand music video (following the female character throughout).  Again, it involves a sort of chase, in which the female character is being followed/chased by (CGI) dogs. She is then assisted by a transparent CGI creature.
  • 8. Porter Robinson - Language  Using Propp’s theory, we can loosely identify the dogs as the villains of the narrative, chasing the princess character who is saved by the CGI monster.  There is no clear equilibrium at the start or end of the video. The only recognisable attempt to resolve the disruption (being chased by the dogs) is when she turns around and starts chasing them.
  • 9. David Guetta - Titanium  Another example of a linear, single-strand music video (it follows the story of the young boy throughout).  The boy in focus appears to have supernatural powers, and for this reason is being chased by armed police.  He is represented as a harmless child who is scared, therefore, even though he is being chased by the police, it is difficult to apply Propp’s theory and label him a hero or a villain.
  • 10. David Guetta - Titanium  Again, in regards to Toderov’s theory, the music video starts without a clear equilibrium, and instead starts after the disruption. It also ends without a new equilibrium (instead it ends without the audience knowing what has happened to the boy).  There is no true binary opposites featured.
  • 11. Our Video  It is a common theme among videos in the “EDM” genre to have a linear and single-strand narrative. I would presume that this is because it would be difficult to tell a multi-strand narrative in such a short amount of time and a non-linear video would be difficult to follow.  It is also fairly common for the video to start at the disruption stage of Toderov’s theory, which is something we may have to consider when creating our music video, as the limited length of the video means we cannot fit all 5 stages into 4 minutes.  I have also found that Barthes theory is a bit too complex to relate to music videos, again due to the short duration of these products.

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