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Media essay - Eastenders bullying


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Media essay - Eastenders bullying

  1. 1. Sonia Ward – 12S6Clip Analysis - Eastenders The clip I am analysing focuses on the subject of bullying – and how the victim of thebullying handles the continuous confrontations and how the director has represented thesethrough the macro features (mise-en-scene, camera, sound and editing). The scene begins with repetitive long pans from a crane shot illustrating thecharacter Ben being chased by a gang of bullies – this is also an establishing shot as itillustrates to the audience the type of setting the characters are in. The pans are very longwhich can signify the length of time the character Ben has been bullied; as continuousviewers of the show would know that the character being bullied was a common thing forhim. A lot of red has been used in the chase scene; the bullies are seen running past the pubwhich has red walls and there are other various red objects around the setting e.g. flags andposters – the colour red connotes danger as the character could potentially be injured. Thesound heard over the top of the scene is diegetic music that is coming from around thesquare as a fair is currently going on; this is evident due to the various decorations aroundthe setting. The music is traditional English fair music – this could signify the normality ofthe situation as no tense music is present; as a result reinforcing the idea that the actions ofthe bully’s towards Ben are nothing new. The clip then cuts to the character Ben knocking on the door of his friend’s house –this is the first time the audience hear the character Ben – in the clip he is shouting for hisfriend Abbie to open the door; as this is the first time the audience hear the character theycan evidently tell that the characters is scared due to the fast paced and loud volume of hisvoice and therefore see the weakness in his character – as a result the audience feelsympathetic towards the character. Throughout the scene, close-ups of the main bully areused to illustrate his intimidating character – it also illustrates the amount of power he hasin the situation – occasionally the director has used point of view shots from the perspectiveof the bully and Ben; this allows the audience to be put in both of the characters views andwitness the contrasting perspectives. The clip then cuts to an elderly character asking them to leave Ben alone in whichthe bully replies ‘Shut-up Grandma’ this could signify the stereotypical view that teenagersdo not have respect for the elderly; as a result, the director is highlighting some socialissues. During the confrontation, the character Ben is standing in front of a pink door – thisis ironic as the colour pink is seen as a very feminine colour – the character Ben is commonlyaccused of being homosexual by the bullies due to him hanging around with girls –therefore, by positioning the actor in front of pink door highlights these issues and reducessome of his power in the situation due to the feminine colour. The bullies in the scene arewearing dark coloured clothing, this reinforces the amount of power they have as the colourblack is quite a bold and powerful colour – it can also be linked to violence. The character Ben runs inside and his friend Abbie emerges from the house – in thissection of the clip the audience see the female character Abbie defend her friend and saysthat she has family that will deal with them if they don’t leave Ben alone. Similar to Ben thecharacter Abbie is standing in front of the pink door; however in this case, the idea of thepink door reducing the power contradicts itself as it is evident in this section of the clip thatthe character Abbie has more power over the bully’s, therefore, this is ironic as theaudience see the female character breaking the idea that females are weaker than males (as
  2. 2. this sometimes is the typical view). The director then cuts to an interview style shot in whichthe bully can be seen in front of a pink house and then to a close up shot of which theaudience can view the bully in front of pale blue coloured house; the irony of the colourpink is again evident as now the power has reversed – whereas before when the characterBen is seen in front of the pink door, it represented the weakness of his character –however, this idea was different for when the female character emerged as she was actuallymore powerful – but in this case, in the bully’s situation, the pale colours represent how heis losing the battle of capturing Ben therefore, the pale colours signify his continuousreduction of power. The clip cuts to the character Ben inside the house – the character is in front of thesmall section of the door way (in addition at the beginning of the clip the confrontation withthe bully is also in a very small area) – this signifies, the characters growing feeling ofisolation as again the fact that bullies are chasing him isn’t something new for him –therefore, the audience sympathises with the character as his growing frustration is evidentwhen the diegetic sound of the character shouting is evident and the bully from outside isfaintly heard saying “We’ll get you next time, when you’re not playing with the girls” – thisreinforcing that the character is being bullied because they believe him to be homosexual. The entrance of the female character’s uncle confirms how the bullies have fully losttheir power as the male character enters with a very dominating tone – the camera hasbeen positioned in a way that illustrates all the bullies facing towards the male character,this highlights his importance in the scene and the amount of power he has. The amount ofpower he has is confirmed when the bullies decide to leave – in this section the main bullyspeaks at a much lower volume again reinforcing his loss in power – however the bully stillsays “We’ll get him another time” illustrating his stubborn attitude. The director then cutsto the younger girl telling the bully “You’ll have to get past me first” – here an over theshoulder shot has been used – on the other hand, this is very ironic as typically this wouldsignify how the bully has the most power over the younger girl but in this case the youngergirl has slightly more power than the bully. More irony is evident through the mise-en-sceneas the younger girl is seen wearing a white coat – the colour white connotes innocence;however, here the audience sees a cheekier and less innocent side of young character. Overall, the director has attempted to highlight the issues of bullying and how it isbecoming a growing concern in today’s society as the amount of bullying happening in theUK is growing. As a result, this fits in with the typical conventions of a soap drama as theyregularly try to highlight current issues happening in society and the realism of thesesituations so their audience can relate to characters.