TV CREDITS EVALUATIONThe task we got given to complete over 6 weeks was to create the openingsequence for A new original SIFI/fantasy British television drama which would airon BBC3.We had to get into groups of 2 so that we would have help and support inproducing the final video, I chose to go with Kristie as I think we are on the samelevel and would help each other in the process.
COSTUMES Make-up and costumes are part of the “Mise en scene," in film and television. They are a vital part of the pre production and production as they help establish the overall look and mood of the piece of media. As we knew that it was very important my partner and myself took great care in choosing the characters outfits and making sure they fitted the role in a way that the audience could sense what personality they were presented with before any words or actions had been taken by that character.An example of where costume is made effective is in the British television Si Fi dramaMisfits which is written by Howard OvermanIn misfits they represent each different character through their costume veryeffectively, because just from the opening section just from looking at the charactersyou gain a clear understanding of the disposition of their character therefore canpredict what they will be hold for the series, which is important when making atelevision show because you need to keep viewers and the only way to do that is tokeep the audience happy.
Below I have I labelled the understanding which I received from each character before I got to know them.SIMON: He comes across as a shycharacter for many reasons which areshown in the opening. Firstly hisappearance, he has his hair all to oneside, with a perfect parting, he alsohas his orange suit buttoned up to thetop and sleeves all the way down hisarms, this shows he likes everythingto be covered and neat. He alsostands in away which would suggestthat he is not confident, hands inpockets and slouched back, keepinghimself to himself unlike many of theothers. His peers pick of this as welland call him ‘the weird kid’.
• KELLY: She comes across as a quite aggressive and disrespected member of the group because of the way she behaves, talks and dresses. I would group her in the class of a ‘chav’ as she has all the stereo typical elements which that would represent, including having her hair scraped back into a pony tail, accompanied by large gold hoop earrings and Adidas trainers with her orange jump suit. The way she is choosing to stand also helps the audience get this social image of her because she has both her elbow leaning backwards onto the bar, this represents to the audience that shes ready for anyone and anything. Overall she comes across as a strong and powerful character.
• CURTIS: Everything about Curtis reflects the fact that he doesn’t want to or even think that he should be in community service. This outfit shows this because he has it jump suit tied around his waist, while wearing a grey vest top which is only half his uniform whilst everyone else is wearing it up on their top half, Because he is in the vest top it shows how muscular he is which makes you believe he sporty and enjoys working out. He does come across as a confident character because of the “i shouldn’t even be here’ which shows he thinks he’s better than all the other young offenders and this is demonstrated in his body language when he is leaning away from everyone else on the bar.
• ALISHA: For the most past Alisha comes across as a stuck up, girly girl flirt. Everything she does in the opening scene reflects this assumption. Her appearance for example, she accessories her orange jump suit with a variation of things which will also compliment her figure more, she has the buttons undone so she can show of her cleavage and then a belt around the waist to give her some shape and finally she rolls up the ankles of the bottoms to make them skinny on her legs. The flirty side of her is represented while she is playing with her hair the whole time in a seductive way. She picks up her phone half way thought the opening and completely ignores the support working orders to hang up, this shows shes stuck up and cheeky because of her obvious disbandment of orders.
• NATHAN: Nathan all the way though the opening comes across as a cheeky, confident and strong character. He does this with all of his remarks and blatant answering back and trying to cause trouble within the group. He is also represented as the main character because of the editing of the shots, nearly every shot goes back toward him after each others of the different misfits. His appearance doesn’t really give away that much to do with his character apart from not really caring, because he has his hair which his messy and curly and his jumpsuit which is done up nearly to the top, he is also standing in the middle of the group with a few people on the other sides of him, this makes him seem to the audience as the main character.
• We wanted to create the same detail in our own sequence so we looked at costume in great detail. An example is with our character Tyler who is played by Tomas Mantle. He is wearing a Jack Wills rugby shirt, this gives off a number of impressions to the audience. One of them is that he is from a privileged background as Jack Wills is a expensive brand and is known for having a high class representation. Also because it is a rugby shirt it makes the assumption that he plays and enjoys sports which would put him in the stereotypical category of jock. He has also got neat hair and looks clean and tidy this shows that he takes pride in his appearance and cares what other people think of him. He is boat shoes which are a common fashions item which allows the audience to see that he have money to keep up with fashion trends.
PROPS AND LOCATION• Props and location are often over looked when making a low budget project because they seem minor compared to script and other more important aspects of the production. However Kristie and myself did not want to over look props and location as they can really make a mark on your video for positive or negative. In preproduction when looking at where, when and how to film certain shots we always looked for the best location to make the scene appear as real as possible, we also always tried to bring in as many props to help add atmosphere to the scene, for example when we needed a car, we used our connections and had a car at college which we were free use willingly with access for as long as we needed. Examples of how we used our props and location scouting are below.
In this scene when the character Graceis packing her bag up, the location is keybecause she is in a bedroom which isstyled perfectly for her personality. Sheis on a single bed which implies that theroom is small and has a tatty secondhand science textbook which both couldimply that she has not come from aparticularly wealthy family. Thewallpaper and bed sheets both haveflowers on them which gives us theimpression that she is rather girly andsweet which also leans into the naïvepart of a possible personality. Thelocation of this room is actually in myhouse, its my older sisters room and itsactually much bigger but you cant see itwith the angle and the framing that wehave done, this location was easy to getto but it looks effective rather than filmingit at college, which looks nothing like aactual room would look like.
• In this scene the character Alexa who is played my myself, Lucy Taylor, is spraying perfume in her room as she gets ready for college. There are a number of props scene which I feel makes the shot more effective and real to the audience in reflecting the personality of Alexa. For example there are photos on the wall which shows that she young, popular and proud. The wall which the photos is on is green which bright which reflects her outgoing personality. She is spraying perfume which is a something that we wanted her to do as one of the actions in the opening because it exhibits her girly and self obsessed attitude towards herself.
An example in the media of location is the SIFI televisionseries LOST which is about the survivors of a severe planecrash which ends up on a remote island.The parts of the lost that are filmed in presentday, which means on the island and not in aflashback to the characters past were filmed inthe Hawaiian island of Oahu. However theproducers of the show make the show lookeffectively like a remote island. The location for lost is very important because the audience need to see that the island has no human life and will be a struggle and challenge to live on, and you wouldnt get that effect if it was all filmed in the middle of a New York street. Of course some of it was filmed its various studios and green screens across America for the most part it was filmed on natural habitats and locations.
• Construction of character is when the audience gets a image of what the character is like and knowing what there life entails. You do this by showing parts of the personality to the audience and opening the characters life up to them, so it seems like they know the character personally. In a opening you need to especially build up a character because if they like the first part of the series maybe the first episode then my will continue to watch and build up a supportive audience.
• In our opening we tried to construct our characters as much as possible so we tried to include scenes which could drop hints of what would follow in the upcoming episodes. One example of this is in the scene where the characters Tyler and Alexa are hugging and laughing. This shows that these two characters will in future episodes be getting very close and may even have a love story between them. This makes the audience hopeful and gives them something to watch for as in our survey that we took one of the aspects which they wanted to see in a programme was a love story.
The Simpsons is a great example of characterconstruction because in there opening you getto know the personality of each characterthrough the actions of them getting home.• The one which I am going to focus on is Bart because in the opening you get to know him really well, first is him writing lines on a chalk board which makes us believe that he is badly behaved at school. We also see him skateboarding through the town, dodging people and being inconsiderate. People in the town also recognised him which shows that he is popular in the town for being a menace. All this information you get for very short clips which make up a big picture of this one character.
NARRATIVE• In television shows opening its important to show a clear narrative of what the show will include and hint at some of the storylines of the show. This is because when watching the opening it should represent the programme in short thus make you decide whether you want to watch it or not. Many programmes don’t do this they simply just have a short credit sequence which shows the name and a little bit of motion from the actors.• Such as Pretty Little Liars, Vampire Diaries and HEROES
A great example of a show which displays clear narrative in it’s openingsequence is DEXTER.Throughout the opening a man whichyou presume is Dexter getting readyfor the day. However whilst doingso, everything becomes very violentand crude. All of the actions becomevulgar and make you feel uneasybecause they seem to relate to murder As he cuts a grapefruit up, it is made to seem like flesh and the blood when he is shaving is portrayed as he is cutting himself. All this relates to the narrative of the show which is that Dexter is a serial killer. So from the opening you get a clear idea of what the show is going to represent.
• In, our opening we wanted to also just like DEXTER, show what our series narrative clearly. We did this by using a overlay effect in final cut to show the characters swapping bodies. We did this for all the characters together and then two at a time, this gave a clue to the narrative that it would just be the four of them swapping.• Another narrative hint in this shot is that they are at college/school because of the computers and work posters in the background.• I think it is important for this to include the narrative in our opening because otherwise it would just look like a teenage TV drama like skins or Waterloo Road and nothing like a SIFI drama.
• In the process of making our credits we knew that we wanted something different to what is on Final Cut or Photoshop, so we went to www.dafont.com and searched techno. Our search came up with a few and to really see which one looked the best we typed our show name and compared on a sheet.• The one which Kristie both decided we liked best was TECHO LCD• For all the names of the actors, actresses and production team members it was perfect.
However for the logo for the show ‘Switch’ we wanted something a bit different, so it would stand out and look for SIFI themed. So we decided to put a glow effect so it would better relate to a space/science effect.On the switch logo title I created a newcanvas and used the bucket tool to paintthe background black. I then went ontothe to text tool and I typed in ‘Switch’. Onthe layer of the text I right clicked andselected blending options. A window thenappeared and I started to play aroundwith the settings that were available. Iadded an outer glow, inner glow, beveland emboss so the text looked like it wasglowing. After creating the title I savedthem on a transparent background on‘save for web and devices’ and laterimported them into final cut.
The friends credits are a inspiration to me because everyone knows the font is to do with FRIENDS when they see it, this type of recognition is something which you can only get with a great long running television show. With friends they also cut between original clips from the first season opening andAnother great thing about the then to current season clipsFRIENDS opening credits is that thefont is the same throughout, so creditsof the actors and producers is thesame as the font, this font is calledGabriel Weiss’. This works wellbecause it makes the whole openingcome together more as a whole andlooks more continuous.
EFFECTSIn the E4 show MISFITSall the characters gainsupernatural powers andSimons is that he can turnhimself invisible when heis feeling ignored. Theeffect that is createdwhen he is doing this todo with overlay on finalcut on this face.This looks effective because it means that you can no longer see his face in themess, he is also pulling a screaming face to show that he is in pain and doesn’tknow what is going on. This looks good to the audience because he feels justas confused as he looks. It is sped up as well which makes it seem harsh andabrupt I also like that it doesn’t happen to the whole body and just the head iseffected because that is where he is feeling ignored in his mind.
In our opening we wanted to use the same sort of effect to what happens to Simon in MISFITS because we really liked the way it left the audience feeling confused as well. However we did need to change the effect slightly as we wanted it to effect the whole body instead of just the head.To do this we used Final Cut and created many of the same clip andoverlaid then on different video tracks and them moved all of the themslightly along to cause a delayed video which over crossed each other.We also played around with some of the video filters to make the effectlook slightly more trippy. The one which we decided on was just colourcorrection and only slightly made the 2 of the slips brighter so theyclash with the others. Unlike MISFITS we kept ours the same speedbecause we wanted the audience to be able to see them effect clearlyas it is not on screen for a long period of time.
FRAMING OF CHARACTERSIn this key frame you can see Alexaand Grace having a conversationwith each other. The ‘over theshoulder shot’ is used to remind theaudience that they are having theconversation with each other andnot other characters in the series.The shot is looking at Grace’sreaction to what Alexa is wearingbecause its not what she wouldusually dress herself in. This shotworks well because it is aconventional shot for any film ortelevision show, therefore it doesnot look out of place.
TYPE OF ACTIONThroughout our video you can see that the type of action is drama andhumour, there are several hints at this including two characters huggingon the field which hints at a romantic relationship between twocharacters which from our focus groups and surveys found out this iswanted by the viewers and audience. More drama is shown when Tylerthrows a paper ball at Edwards head, this would cause conflict whichalways results in drama between the group that you see forming in theopening. Humour is reflected when Tyler has been put into Alexa’s bodyand looks down her top, this is funny because this is what most teenageboys would do if they had the chance to so they can relate to the actionon screen.
The most enjoyable aspect for me was the research. This is because Ihave never really been interested in watching SIFI shows because Idon’t believe in supernatural or space. So this discouraged me to takinga interest in any of the shows which I have seen be advised.Before we started this project the only SIFI media that I ever watchedwas a few episodes of LOST, Twilight and Harry Potter.However from researching shows such as MISFITS, HEROES andVampire Diaries and finding our that there is more to SIFI than justDoctor Who and Star Wars I have really opened myself up too othertypes of TV shows other than the normal ones which I watch forexample How I Met Your Mother and Big Bang Theory.So this project has helped me find my section of SIFI which I enjoy andI think that it has been reflected in the television show that we havecreated as I think it has the same audience as MISFITS rather thanStar Trek, because of the light science fiction and teen references.
• I found editing the hardest because in the past projects at in this course where we have had to do editing we were always working alone so if we came into a conflict we could solve it easily and quickly. But when you ate working with another person you have to check everything with them to make sure they agree otherwise they may not like it and then you have to go back and change it later on which is counter productive.• The editing is also difficult because although you can both sit at the laptop with earphones, but only one person can be in control of the laptop this means the other person just has to watch and this can be very boring and tiresome. So the other person always ends up getting distracted and losing focus which makes it hard for the editor to consult them on the progress and changes throughout.• One way which we did help this situation is that while I was editing Kristie made all the credits on the desk next to me and so she was doing something instead of just wasting her time and she was still next to me so I could talk to her about the editing process.
• During pre-production, production and post production Kristie and myself faces a number of difficulties and problems but we managed to overcome them all.1. One of the first problems that we uncounted during pre-production is that neither Kirstie or myself had really watched any science fiction TV shows so we we’re stuck with what to type of show to do it on. To solve this we decided to watch a few that night that the first episode in order for us to gain a better understanding for us to actually make our own. It did really help because I gave us a idea of what counted as Science Fiction genre.2. The biggest problem that we faced in production was that after we had filmed a few of the scenes with Doug who was supposed to be playing Tyler he fell sick and could not continue filming the next day when we needed all four of the actors. This caused huge stress because we only found out the morning of the day we were shooting.
To solve this huge problem we spent some time on the phone toour actor Thomas who was originally meant to play Edward but insteadhad to play Tyler. Then we had to try to find someone else who couldplay the role of Edward and we asked another boy called Harry but hewas not free when we needed him because he had a lesson. So in theend we had to use one of our class mates Ed. However he was alsobusy making his own project so he could only film for a short space oftime. So everything which we filmed with him was quite rushed and hewas wearing all the same clothes which was something that we reallydid not want to happen. Luckily Thomas had more time available to filmthe parts which needed re-filming because Doug being unavailable, thismade things less stressful and brought the quality of the video upslightly. In the end we did manage to get all of the stuff filmed on theplanned day but it was a pain doing because of the cancelations3. One of the last problems which Kristie and myself faced was thatin post production we realised that we really did not have enough clipsto make the video long enough to fit within the boundary. So duringlunch that day we went out and filmed a few extra scenes that we couldthink of which included the both of us that would help us tell the storybetter. This worked quite well because I think we managed to get somestrong clips which actually work really well in the final video.
• Working in a group of two had many positives but it did have its fair share of negatives as well.• Some of the positives were that if you were ever stuck for ideas or you needed help someone was always there to help you figure what is missing from it or how to solve the problem.• Another positive is that you could always share the work, so it got done much faster and still to a high standard. If there is part of the whole project process that you do not like or feel that its not your strongest part, odds are the other person will be good at it and enjoy it. So during the process with another person most of the time you get to do the bits which you are strongest at• However there are some negatives. One of them being that you have to consult your partner about every part of the process and if you have a idea and you love it your partner may not which means that the idea has to be scrapped.
• Another negative is that you have to spend large amounts of time with your partner and if you don’t always get on with them that can cause difficulties because of the lack of communication• One more negative is that if the other member of your group is absent you are quite often stuck for what to do because maybe they havent brought the work in simply just havent done it. That’s another problem if your partner is lazy and doesn’t have time to do the work, luckily that wasn’t a problem with me because Kristie is a very dedicated student like myself.• Organisation with two people is easier because you can fit into into each others free time, however with Kristie and myself we both have very demanding jobs outside of college working all weekend and good number of nights during the week so we found organisation. So we found that sometime we had to give up some of the free time during lunch and after college to make ourselves available to meet up and do more planning to help us end up with a final product that we would both be proud of• Over all having a partner was better than working alone because of all the help you can get and communication really isnt that hard between two people as long as they get on good together but I would not have wanted to work in a bigger group than 3 people it would have been too hard.
As Kristie and myself get closer towards the draft copy of our edit, webot decided that we needed to start thinking about which music was tobe included in our opening credits and intro.We wanted the same style of music as Bands such as Green Day andOasis, so in the genre of American punk and British Rock. This isbecause of the energy that this type of music gives off. We also wantedthe music to seem upbeat but not the pop upbeat music which you hearin American sitcoms. I knew a band which sung, recorded andperformed this style of music, that their name is Sterling, they have aMySpace and Facebook page which they post their latest music andperformance dates.
I listened to all their available musicand found two which I thought wouldbe appropriate for the opening andstyle which we want to create. Ishowed both to Kristie how was atthe time busy making the shot listand she liked one but not the other.The one which we both liked wasHistoria. The next step that I tookwas I contacted the lead singer of theband, Dale Taylor. I know himpersonally because I went to thesame school and he used to teachme guitar, so I sent him a email via COPYRIGHT:Facebook. “the exclusive right to makeThis was perfect because we got a copies, license, and otherwise exploit a literary, musical, or artisticgreat song that we really liked and work, whethersuits the TV show perfectly and we printed, audio, video, etc.: works granted such right by law on orgot to use it without breaking any after January 1, 1978, are protectedcopyright laws. for the lifetime of the author or creator and for a period of 50 years after his or her death.”
Its important that we got permission before we used the songbecause, using someone elses content without their permission is illegal ifthey have not given creative commons on it.Another ethical consideration which we needed to take into account is tomake sure that we had a range of ethical backgrounds in our cast list toavoid being open to being judged for racism and other prejudgments.We did not purposely take action, however it so happened that we avoidedhaving a all British white cast by having Kristie Cheng who is Chinese playthe role of grace.
SKILLS DEVELOPMENTDuring this whole project I have used a variety of different computersystems, some of which I have used before and have learnt more fromand others which were completely new.One of the software that I used was Final Cut Express which I had usedbefore in other college units and at home but during this unit I learntsome new skills which I feel will help me with future projects and tasks.One of the skills that I learnt was how important video filters can be tomake your video more interesting to add some variation to the clips tomake it more exciting and interesting. Even if it is just a slight bit ofcolour correction it can make a lot of difference.Key framing was a vital part of our production, because it is whatcreated the effect where they changed bodies and without that effectthe whole opening would not have any meaning towards ScienceFiction, it would just be a teenage drama like SKINS.One software that I had never used before was NEED TO FINISH
The target audience that we got given to create our product for was theaudience of BB3 which is:MALE- 17SHOPS: TOPMAN, RIVER ISLAND, ARK, URBAN OUTFITTERS.FOOD: NANDOS, REDBULL, DORITOS, MCDONALDS, SNICKERSTVSHOWS: MISFITS, INBETWEENERS, FAMILY GUY, CLEVELAND SHOW.FILMS: STEPBROTHERS, ADULTHOOD, ROLE MODLES, HANGOVERGAMES: TEMPLE RUN, CALL OF DUTY, FIFA.INTERNET: FACEBOOK, TWITTER, YOUTUBE FEMALE -17 SHOPS: TOPSHOP, ZARA, H&M , URBAN OUTFITTERS FOOD:NANDOS, WAGAMAMAS, MCDONALDS AND STARBUCKS TVSHOWS: THE ONLY WAY IS ESSEX, SKINS AND MISFITS FILMS: MEAN GIRLS, WHITE CHICKS AND DEVIL WEARS PRADA GAMES: TEMPLE RUN AND ANGRY BIRDS INTERNET: FACEBOOK, TWITTER AND TUMBLR.Overall based on the target audience I feel as though our show based on theopening is too young for the target audience and channel which we had tobase it on. I think a better channel for it too be aired on would be CBBC, as itreflects the younger audience more. If I could change it I would make thewhole opening darker and more gloomy to make it seem more like a teenageScience Fiction such True Blood or Heroes and less like the Sarah JaneAdventures. If we did this and also included a few more conventional teenageaspects such as parties, drinking and drugs we would gain a few years ontothe target audience and bring it up to BBC THREES target audience.
The strengths of our opening are that the music is very power and has acatchy guitar hook which would get in people heads. Also a lot of the edits fitit with the music which is something we got advised to include as it makesthe opening seem very clean cut and effectively sharp. Even though wemuted the background sound in order to hear the music better it doesn’t looklike a music video which is a success because that was something which wewere nervous aboutAnother strength I think is that all the clips are off good quality, and look asthey have been thought out before shooting. We produced a good variationof camera angles which stay consistent and do not strain the eye whistwatching.The credits which we produced looked great and suited the style of theopening perfectly, most of them were placed in parts which were easy to readand for the right space of time.From feedback I have learnt that in the first section of the characters gettingready it is easy to determine between each character and their differentactions which they are doing in order to get ready for college.One of last strengths in a certain part in the editing when Grace is arriving atcollege, and she bumps into two boys because she is too preoccupied withher phone and it switches from a side view to a long shot just as they knockher this gives the audience a feeling of being knocked as well and isextremely effective I think.
The first of our weaknesses with our video is that we struggled to use manyfilters during the editing because we ran out of time and inspiration. I thinkthis makes the opening seem boring and dull because most of it is in thesame light and looks as though it had been filmed one after the other eventhough this is not the case.Another weakness is that at the end of the opening the music and text justcut off, if I could change it now I would fade both to give it a smoother andcleaner ending rather than the abrupt one it has now.The last weakness is that the opening lacks shots of the boys andespecially Edward. Most of the shots are of the girls interaction with eachother, this is because shooting with Kristie and myself is easier than figuringout when the boys are free and then taking them away somewhere to film. IfI could change it I would have given us more time to film all of the scenesinstead of just a week given us two weeks because then we could haverecorded more with the boys and involved then in more of the shots.
Our original idea was ‘teenagers swapping bodies’ and I think that we stuckwith that idea very well. At first we wanted to make it much like skins, whichparties and drugs being a main aspect but that soon changed when wewanted it to be more family friendly and we may have gone a bit far with thefamily friendly as now its very clean of all that teenage stuff but we still havestuck to the same simple idea and with the same high school characterconventions which we took inspiration from places such as ‘The BreakfastClub’ and ‘Mean Girls’.In conclusion I am very happy with how our final product turned out and amproud at how hard Kristie and myself works to get it too the high standardwhich we believe that it is at.