Semiotic Analysis of Usmc's Commercial "The Climb"

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We can learn a lot from watching television. A viewer can distinguish differences between what societies believes as appealing or desirable versus what is off-putting or unwanted. The power of television exposes us to values and concepts, realistic or unrealistic, which shape how we see and react to ideas. An example of television shaping our beliefs can found when watching videos such as the United States Marine Corps recruiting commercials. Using a semiotic analysis of a 2001 USMC recruiting commercial entitled “The Climb,” a viewer can analyze the given signs and symbols throughout the video that make being part of the USMC not only something to be desired, but a characteristic value to be honored as well. Berger says that signs and…show more content…
19). For the man in the video, a story is being told of his journey or his difficult climb towards what the video voices as his “destiny among the world’s greatest warriors.” In the span of 60 seconds, while we follow the man climbing we can see images that are first placed as the sole image we see on screen (instead of the man climbing). The images are then “transferred” onto the rock walls at different intervals of his climb. This sort of transference from an image being all that we see on screen to being placed on the walls suggest that the particular event is what the man will soon experience and is something that the man is growing closer to reaching. Furthermore on the diachronic analysis, each of the particular events shown in the video is significant to the development of the man’s character as a U.S. Marine. The first image we see on the rock wall is a man in uniform. There are two things to note here. First, the man in uniform is, in fact, the climber. This sign signifies that the man sees the person who he wants to be and that his goal of becoming that man can be reached once he gets to the top, having to fully dedicate himself to the feat of climbing the large rock. The second thing to note is the actual camera shot of the image of the man in uniform in this scene. It is between a close-up (face only) to medium shot (most of the

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