Media Studies Evaluation
1. In which ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?
We managed to address 2 out of 3 of these issues but unfortunately we couldn't address the coming out storyline due to not being able to obtain two homosexual male actors, we were forced to use a male and female couple to act out the storyline which did make it less controversial but still kept it current as many teenagers face relationship issues during this time in their life. In a way this has also meant that we have helped to develop the conventions shown within a real soap opera and allowed viewers to become more aware of certain situations that they may not come across in their everyday lives. Some viewers who may be struggling with one of the issues we are portraying within the soap opera may find the programme a form of escapism or even provide them with help when trying to deal with their situation. Escapism is seen within the theory of "Uses and Gratification" theory represented by Katz and Blumler 1974. They believe that we all use the media for a variety of different purposes or gratifications. They include;
- Social interaction
- Personal Identity
These for things all incorporate why some audience members may use the programme as an escapism from their everyday lives. British viewers' explanations for watching soap opera are shown to concern escapism, realism, relationship with characters, critical response, problem-solving, role in viewer's life, emotional experience and entertainment. Viewers take soap opera seriously, and consider that the characters and problems portrayed are highly realistic and personally involving, has implications for issues of media effects.
Another theorists views that relates to our soap opera trailer was Todorov's theory, he believed this could be applied to any film however I also believe we have brought this theory to our pieces.
There are five stages the narrative can progress through:
- A state of equilibrium (All is as it should be.)
- A disruption of that order by an event.
- A recognition that the disorder has occurred.
- An attempt to repair the damage of the disruption.
- A return or restoration of a NEW equilibrium
Some other theorists we looked at can be found in our earlier blog post [http://susaskshw2015.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/genre-theory.html]
I believe that from our research into other soap operas it is clear to see that the majority of individual storylines within the soaps follow this structure and is a continuing theory used over many episodes and used for years. This is demonstrated in our planning for future scenes which we presented as if we were pitching our own Soap Opera to an institution of our choice, which we decided to be E4.
2. How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?
The main photograph on the TV listings magazine challenges the stereotypical conventions of this type of magazine, usually we see the cover stars looking directly at the camera (looking towards the audience and addressing them). On our magazine front cover we see Henry and Kira looking towards each other which is something uncommon and also the fact that we can't really see much of her face leads the audience to want to find out more about these two characters. This photograph was actually manipulated from 2 separate images to achieve the final outcome and something everyone in the group was pleased with.
We wanted to document when we filmed the different scenes so decided to take photographs every time we were on location filming, All of these photos can be found here:
We know that the effectiveness of our 2 ancillary texts would be a key element in how successful the soap opera would be so getting these things right is extremely important to the producers and also the institution where the soap is to be aired upon.
Final ancillary texts-
3. What have you learned from your audience feedback?
From our feedback we acted upon the comments made and really tried to tailor the products to suite them and their tastes. Comments made towards the TV magazine where that there was quite a lot of empty space and didn't seem as "cluttered" as some of the other competitors on the market at the moment, this lead us to changing the magazine slightly and incorporating more elements and text. Towards our poster people felt that it was a little bit too dark which made it hard to see from a distance, by lightening the picture up it allowed us to grab the audience’s attention and make them read the information provided rather than just skimming over it. These comments were in response to out Soap Opera Trailer Questionnaire (Seen Above and answered in the video)-
The positioning of the text and institution logo (E4) was key as well; after analysing many other soap opera posters and in particular E4 posters it was clear to see that with the majority of them the E4/institution logo was in the bottom right hand corner. This is because this is the last place the human eye is drawn towards and the most memorable just after the bottom left hand corner which is why we decided to move the pieces of information round a bit in order to withhold the viewer’s intrigue and attention. Especially as our soap opera is new we need our target audience to take note of what we are premièring and want to watch what we have produced including both our ancillary’s, we feel our main product does this perfectly.
The results for our questionnaire can be found here- [http://susaskshw2015.blogspot.co.uk/2014/12/questionnaire-results.html]
4. How did you use media technologies in the construction and
research, planning and evaluation stages?
|Invitations given out to guests
Throughout all 3 of these stages we have used our blog (on blogger.com) to publish all of our work and use it as an online portfolio. By using this domain it has enabled us to edit and share things as a group that otherwise would have been much harder to do, things such as questionnaire results, things we need to have completed for next lesson and also somewhere we can all access the same information. No one in the group had really explored the full potential blogger has to offer so it was interesting getting to know the site and all of the features it has to offer. As a group we explored and learnt these things and made full use of them to be able to make our blog as successful as we could.
Evaluation- The evaluation was mainly conducted through Word, however when we were looking to amend our products we asked the audience members who attended our premier screening if they could give us critical feedback via questionnaires. The results we got from this allowed us to put the information into pie charts on Excel to be able to see what areas needed improving, having this type of information allowed the group to look at the products we had created from a different angle and with a new pair of eyes. As we had been working on our products since the beginning of term it was easy for us to not see the potential our pieces had and some of the things that needed changing/amending had been over looked. Using these comments and statistics made us as a group re-focus and change our products to really suit our target audience.