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Song: Bully

Artist: Shinedown
Publisher:Rob Calivor
Produced: Atlantic Records (in the us) and via Roadrunner records (everywhere else)
Shinedown are my example for an alternative
metal band Bully is one there more heavier songs
the themes share the dark connotations of a fair
few music videos and similar to metallica's video
of one they are trying to draw attention to another
social issue by using shock factors and displaying
more striking themes that you wouldn't often see
on some types of music videos.The theme quite
blatantly plastered as the tracks name alone
demonstrates is about bullying the music video is
a combined narrative and performance piece
however the narrative is more of a montage to get
there point across about a theoretical situation that
can often happen in normal society. Most of the
focus is on the narrative side trying to convey the
message most of the band members are blacked
out as if in darkness against a white background
to show that they aren't the main focus with the
exception of the lead singer who is shown in
normal lighting (still against a white background)
he isn't blacked out so that you can see his facial
expressions as well as gestures which help to
dramatise the themes within the music video and
add emphasis as well as to make it seem more
personal and meaningful as the singer who wrote the song has personal ties to the subject.
The editing is extremely fast paced some of them with 4 shots being shown and changed within
a second to ramp up the tension and generate and make it seem a lot more as if it was an in the
moment sort of scenario to make it seem to the audience that they are watching this in real life
as it happening the less screen time a shot as the more from an audience perspective it seems
insignificant which helps the portrayal of the victims of the various accounts of bullying in the
video seem unimportant which again creates more of a shock based impact. They also have
shots that are the opposite to this where there is more of a focus on a person as it is a longer
period of time before another shot change which connotes the person in that shot being more
important than in the quicker ones as they get more screentime.

In the video you see a lot of different places particularly where bullying could occur and also
where the average person might be and see for
that matter on a daily basis e.g. an office
representing work with white shirts black skirts
black trousers ties smart shoes etc as well as the
scenery such as desks etc. Another example area
is the focus on homes you see a childs bedroom
(again similar to what metallica did using children
to make people react more to the horrific themes in
the video) and also a wife very stereotypically
waiting for her presumably abusive husband to
come home these settings have been deliberately
chosen and connoted to link the music videos narrative to real life scenarios to create more of
an impact and keep the focus on effectively attempting to raise the awareness of the audience
and trying to get them to say intervene if that was an occurrence that they saw.

Other aspects could be the fact that all of the band are dressed in black which connotes death
and darkness and nothingness which contrasts greatly with the white background representing
purity and again potentially nothingness this has been done so that they still look like a metal
band as black is a common colour theme of the metal genre whereas the white being used is to
show that they are also a counter type to typical metal bands hence why they are in alternative
There are some major mise en scene based elements relating to the theme of bullying some of
the more notable ones being a hanging noose which is a link to the main overarching theme as
bullying is the subject and bullying can be related to suicide due to its links with the lyrics its also
directly linked with the performance part of the song and death is also a typical theme within
some metal songs so it nicely connotes several possible meanings behind its use in the music
video. They also use mise en scene to create a representation of a bully this being the hooded
character in black that appears throughout the narrative in every scene involving the bullying its
the same hooded figure he is wearing black which again as all of the connotations I stated
earlier but the fact that he is wearing a hoodies has links to the stereotype of potentially young
people but mainly of people who wear hoodies connoting that they have something to hide and
that are violent individuals you could also argue that the fact the bully is a male might have
some relevance as it might connote the stereotype that only men bully however personally I feel
its unfounded as from other shots both genders seem to be represented equally and gender
equality is not the focus bullying is which can happen to either gender. At the start the video they
also show 2 trees on fire trees representing the colour green normally and in turn life fire and
red being 2 colours that connote danger or destruction and other more violent themes which
together links back to the bullying scenario as well
as the links between life and death and suicide.

Theres not a lot to talk about with sound aside from the fact that the music links directly to the
instruments being played as in shots are shown of the instruments during key bits in the song
e.g. guitar solo shot of a guitar and during the end scene when the kid victim is shown
metaphorically triumphing over the bully as he
throws the bully to the floor the song ends showing
the music is directly linked to the narrative and is
being used a tool to explain the story.
during the narrative aspect they often use black and
white in a kind of victim and victimizer kind of theme
with two contrasting colours black particularly with
the hooded figure but also just in general shots
theres also a bit of black in the shots as well as a bit
of white almost like a ying and yang effect the black
representing the victimiser and the white
representing the victim this is supported by the lyrics
seems I crossed the line again for being nothing
more than who I am which can be connoted with
colour white as it is purity and innocence and hope as
well as good intentions and black is a very dominant
colour that takes over pretty much anything and in a
sense the colour is a bully hence why it is used to
represent the metaphorical bully figure in the video.
At the very end they also use grey to represent a
mixture of the two sides which basically states
everyones the same and has the potential to be the
victimizer and the victim it also connotes dullness and
loss of life and can be used to represent an afterlife
this changes during the confrontation based shots
linking very closely with the narrative as the scene
progresses more and more of the now open field
background changes into colour to show a
metaphorical victory that moves over into real life.
Camera Shots
Status shots are the heavily featured in this video to help create the feeling of oppression that
bullying conotes and to add to the dark and heavy atmosphere that is created through the
videos shock factors the bully in the majority of the shots is shown as higher status with
upwards facing status shots which is used to highlight that he is a binary opposite of the victim
and by emphasizing these contrasts it adds to the feeling of isolation this is contrasted by the
end shot showing the victims eventually triumph and the victim is shown as having more power
than the bully as their statuses have been swapped. There are two establishing shots at the

start and end of the music video one to give the effect of the music video going full circle by
starting and ending similar but with distinct differences the starting establishing shots
representing life living with bullying represented by a burning tree against a greyed out sky and
the end establishing shots representing the victim triumphing over the Bully as a result colour for
the first time in the video is returns back to normal and the burning tree effect is stopped
bringing back the connotations of a green tree representing life and a new beginning.