TV Drama RepresentationsEthnicity What to look forThings that may be represented • Places- cities, countries, regions• Religion• Beliefs (e.g. women treated differently to men)• Treatment of different ages (e.g. the elderly treated with more respect than inWestern cultures)• Mixed ethnicity or heritage• Language• Dialect-e.g. slang and colloquialisms used by black British people• Furnishings• Cultural bridges• Accent• Names• How ethnicities and different cultures relate to each other• Position in scene- rooms, parts of buildings (e.g. illegal immigrants in basement)• Interracial relationships and challenges facedMise en scene • Locations- how can you tell you are in a different culture to the one in which theprogramme was made?• Costumes- pick out any differences between the character’s costumes todemonstrate that you understand that they come from different cultures.• How does ethnicity link to status?• How do costumes show that some characters bridge across cultures?• Props- look at the way sets are dressed• Ethnicity of actors- how does this combine with costume, accent, location?• Lighting- dingy, low- key lighting could imply illegitimacy- someone who is notsupposed to be there. High-key, naturalistic daylight implies equilibrium.
Editing • Fast paced editing implies panic• Smooth, slow edits imply calm and equilibriumSound • Minor keys, fast paced music, increase in tone, volume, pace imply panic• Instruments used may relate to the ethnicity on screen• Dialogue• AccentCamerawork • Low angles, hand held, shots from behind furniture or other items could imply apoint of view perspective from someone hiding• Hand held camerawork implies panic and confusion, chaos• Steady camerawork implies equilibrium• Low angle MCU could imply dominance• ELS suggest character is dominated by surroundings or defeatedSexuality What to look forThings that may be represented • Straight• Gay• Bisexuality• Transgender• Transvestite• People that are “closeted” or uncomfortable with their true sexuality• People that try to deny or change their true sexuality when they are already “out”• Body shape and gendered characteristics are mixed up e.g. a girl with short hair,piercings, tattoos, playing football = lesbian.• Leakage- non verbal or verbal cues that betray your true feelings.• Compare gay and straight representations• Positive or negative reps? Attitudes of characters in sequence towards
gay/straight people? How are the audience positioned in relation to theprotagonist?Mise en scene • Costume- male straight/gay and female straight/gay• Locations- how do the locations, lighting or settings link to how sexuality is seen inthe sequence?• Props- are there any items used by characters that indicate their true sexuality?(e.g. the five alive can with lipstick mark)• Lighting• PerformanceEditing • Fast paced editing- what could this indicate? Confusion, excitement, tension,secrecy?• Slow edits• Flashbacks• Sound bridging• Cross cutting• Fades, wipes, other transitions• Crash zoomsSound • Dialogue• Language used- slang, colloquialism. Language associated with the opposite gendere.g. a male character speaking like a female• Tone, pitch, volume. Does this match the gender of the character?• Non- diegetic sound- major and minor keys could indicate happiness or honesty.Pace and instruments used, what do these imply about the way the characters feel?• Voiceover- reveals true thoughts directly to audience• Sound in layers e.g. dialogue + non- diegetic score + non- diegetic voiceover• Changes in music e.g. fast to slow when going into a flashback or a scene with achange in mood or meaning
Camerawork • ELS indicates protagonist is dominated by events and uncomfortable in the situation• ECU shows detail character is focusing on• Hand held camerawork indicates imbalance or chaos. Also used to show realism• Steadicam shows that everything is under control. Equilibrium.• Zooms, track, pan. Speed of movement could indicate protagonist’s mental state• CU allows subject to dominate the shot• POV shows what protagonist is focusing onClass/ Status What to look forThings that may be represented • CLASS- wealth, birth, breeding, manners.• Outward demonstrations of this could be costume- fabrics used e.g. silk, velvet, lacewould indicate someone who has wealth. Wearing these clothes suggests that you leada lift of leisure, don’t need to work or have spare money to spend on luxuries and havethe time to follow fashions.• Rough cotton, for example, would indicate someone for whom clothes are purelyfunctional. Someone who needs to work to earn a living and support a family. Perhapssomeone who works with their hands and whose clothes may get dirty• Jewellery is also an indicator of class• Hair: elaborate styles on women suggest that the character can employ someone to dotheir hair for them and that they have the time to have their hair styled.• Colour can indicate class- colours like purple, blue, red are “royal” colours and linked toupper classes. Natural colours (earthy tones or the natural colour of the fabric) wouldindicate someone whose clothes were functional and didn’t need to/ couldn’t afford todye them. White is a high status colour as it shows that you won’t go anywhere where
you may get dirt on you.• STATUS- can be linked to class- for example within a small social circle of rich peoplethere will be the “richest” person, and they might be more respected than others• Status can change one person can hold more than one status in one sequence. This isimportant.• One social circle can include a separate hierarchy e.g. a friendship group whereeveryone is largely equal will have a hierarchy of status (like the Plastics in Mean Girls) be prepared to look for different statuses within one scene and one group of peopleMise en scene • Can the scenes be divided into areas that “belong” to people of different classes? Whathappens when a character moves to an area in which they don’t belong? Is their statusemphasised?• Props. Costume, ornaments, furniture, jewellery, hairstyles can all indicate wealth andtherefore class. Lack of luxury goods indicates a lack of wealth.• Character relationships- do some characters serve others?Editing • Fast paced editing can indicate chaos and hard work, busyness• Smooth tracking shots can suggest a lack of activity and a life of leisure and comfortSound • Dialogue- how do characters speak to each other? Is respect shown by those of lowstatus or class? Are wealthier or stronger characters rude or demanding?• Diegetic sound- lots of noise and activity indicates little wealth, a need to work for aliving whereas quiet indicates that not many people have access to these areas- they areexclusive.• Background music may be refined or rougherCamerawork • Low angles show which characters dominate in terms of status- remember, if statuschanges like in Merlin the character portrayed with a low angle will change• Extreme long shots show characters being dominated by their surroundings- maybethey are in the wrong place for their status or class and are being treated poorly bythose who belong there
Regional Identity What to look forThings that may be represented • Social groups e.g. cockneys, scousers, farmers, cowboys• Region may be linked to class and wealthMise en scene • Buildings, high rise flats, council houses may link regional ID to wealth and classEditing • Fast paced edits show frantic lifestyle, links to crime• Slower, smoother edits may signify a wealthier regional IDSound • Accent• Dialect• Slang or colloquialisms• Glottal stop (dropped ‘t’s, h’s, d’s and g’s)• Background music- bands from that region or genres related to that regionCamerawork • Establishing shots, ELS, high angle shots that showed surrounding areas anddemonstrated location to the audience