Visual – themildewmuncher7

Shampoo .01

00:01 – The advert begins with a plastic shampoo bottle seemingly placed next to a tub. There is typical tiling of a bathroom on the wall in the background and the porcelain tub closer to the foreground. This shot is focused on the shampoo, hinting that it will be the primary character in the advert. The shampoo itself is very generic, meaning it’s very unlikely that the advert is for a specific brand.

Shampoo .03

00:03 – The shot then skips to a wider view of the bathroom, with the notably present, although out of focus, shampoo bottle taking up the foreground. There is a small boy in the bathroom using the sink. The bathroom as a whole seems to be rather upscale in nature, however it is unclear whether this has anything to do with the nature of the advert.

Shampoo .05

00:05 – The camera zooms in on the child, giving a clear image of him in the mirror as a young Asian boy. Perhaps this will hold significance if he appears later in the advert? He also appears to be drowsy, as if he had just woken up and is about to take on the day

Shampoo .06

00:06 – The time of the advert then switches, once again with the shampoo present. Although to the side, it is very much in focus along with the fogged up glass shower wall. This infers that the bottle was recently used. A woman is present in the background and seems to be applying makeup while wearing more formal attire, maybe getting ready for an event of some sort.

Shampoo .08

00:08 – The focus of the shot switches, revealing that indeed the woman is at the sink/mirror applying makeup and getting ready for something. It is presumed to be nighttime, as the lights in the room are on. It should also be noted that the format of the bathroom is very similar to the one with the boy, perhaps meaning it is the same one and that the lady is either the boy’s mother or his older sister.

Shampoo .09

00:09 – Shot change, this time someone in a purple bathrobe is with the good ‘ol shampoo bottle. They are grabbing the bottle as if about to use it for something. Once again, the glass is fogged up hinting that the shower has recently been used.

Shampoo .11

00:11 – The person in the purple bathrobe is revealed to be a young Asian girl, too young to be the woman in the previous scene and not a boy enough to be from the first scene. She has the shampoo bottle in her hands but is not using it for normal shampoo purposes, but instead utilizing just the bottle itself as a microphone stand-in. She is walking through the bathroom, which once again is clearly the same as the setting from the first two scenes. This also appears to take place in the afternoon, judging by the angle the light is coming in through the window.

Shampoo .12

00:12 – This next shot is very reminiscent of the first, as it is taken in the exact same location and with the same lighting and positioning of objects around the shampoo bottle. The key difference, however, is that the bottle is showing some classic “I’ve used this shampoo a lot” wear and tear by having crusty contents caked on and around the lid. This develops somewhat of a connection with the bottle. Although completely inanimate, it has been shown to have somewhat of a life cycle, being used for multiple things and now visibly aging.

Shampoo .13

00:13 – Very suddenly, the old shampoo bottle is replaced by a brand new one. It turns out it had reached the end of its life cycle, and no longer serves a purpose in the bathroom, being favored by a bottle with fresh contents.

Shampoo .14

00:14 – The old bottle is taken by the replacer and tossed dramatically into a recycling bin, with the frames being put into slow motion as the bottle hits the inside of the can. The casual manner it is done in hints that this is a regular occurrence and happens, or should happen, a lot.

Shampoo .15

00:15 – The camera then fades instead of jump cutting like it had been doing previously when switching scenes. From the recycling bin, which has the ‘recycling’ image clearly printed on its side, the camera switches to what appears to be a comb, which also has an identical logo printed on it.

Shampoo .16

00:16 – The comb is the center of the image now, with the camera following it as it’s picked up. It is moving quickly away from its original resting place which seemed to be a bathroom sink. It is unable to be determined if the bathroom is the same as the one previously pictured.

Shampoo .18

00:18 – Aside from this being one of the creepiest smirks in existence, this shot also reveals where the comb was headed. A white man, different from anyone previously shown, is using it to comb his hair. He is wearing a dress shirt as is determined by his collar. He is presumably using the comb to get ready for a day or work or meeting of some sort. It is entirely possible that he is a member of the family in the beginning of the advert, as an older male figure was never shown and it is possible, with a very basic observation of race, that he could be the father of the kids.

Shampoo .22

00:22 – After four whole seconds of that guy combing his hair, he moves the comb downwards, with the camera following it the entire way. It is then apparent that he is giving the comb to a very young boy for him to use. This boy is not the same as the one from the first scene as he is a bit younger and very different physically.

Shampoo .23

00:23 – A wider shot shows the two characters standing next to one another combing their hair together using the comb from the first shot. The bathroom is certainly not the same as the one from the first three scenes, as it is considerably smaller and has differing features. This implies heavily that this is a different setting entirely, probably a different family.

Shampoo .25

00:25 – A jump cut then skips to the comb next to the sink alone, without the two characters that were just in the room. It is placed in such a way that the recycling symbol is clear and obvious, very reminiscent of the image on the side of the recycling can that the original shampoo bottle was thrown into. The text “Give your garbage another life.” also centers itself across the screen. This tells the viewer that the shampoo bottle was transformed through the magic of recycling into a comb. Despite losing its use as a shampoo bottle, it was revived as a comb.

Shampoo .28

00:28 – The last frame of the advert is a black screen with the word “Recycle.” printed across the middle. It is in italic, very contrasting text that is very clear (white on black is so much nicer than black on white, right?). A website for further information is also given along with the organization Keep America Beautiful from the Ad Council, who put out the advert.

This entry was posted in A02: Visual Rhetoric, themildewmuncher7. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Visual – themildewmuncher7

  1. themildewmuncher7 says:

    Feedback was requested.

    Feedback provided.


  2. davidbdale says:

    Hello, mildewmuncher. Let’s begin.
    01. Is there any indication in the first shot that this is a residential bathroom, or that the residence is of any particular type? In other words, do we get a sense of “lifestyle” from the opening shot that will establish how we might react? Feel free to say No, but do you get any indication of a face from those two handle-eyes and the open mouth on the shampoo bottle? It might even have teeth. You’re smart to indicate there’s no specific brand.

    03. I like your notation that the bottle is still centered in the foreground. Does that suggest that we’re seeing things “from the shampoo’s point of view”? Not precisely, of course, but the angle does suggest that the bottle of frame 01 is this same bottle, unmoved. You’ve also addressed my “lifestyle” curiosity from 01.

    05. I have to agree there are more questions than answers here. The child certainly doesn’t seem to be interested in the shampoo bottle, and there’s no indication what we’re to conclude from looking at the boy. One thing though. The mirror’s unfogged. There certainly has been no showering, and possibly no bathing. Reinforcing what?

    06. So: a different time of day? Different person. Same bathroom? One with a shower and a tub? What does the room orientation suggest? The chair, pillow, and lamp, plus closet door indicate what? Hallway? Master bedroom? (GRAMMAR: The ad IMPLIES that the bottle was used. We INFER that the bottle was used.)

    08. This is going well, mildew. The questions I anticipate in one frame, you mostly address in the next. Would you say that if we can’t tell for sure the bathroom is the same from inspection this close, its identity can’t possibly be essential to the spot? If it were necessary, a real-time viewing would tell us what we need to know. Right?

    I want to suggest again that these angle and focus changes suggest a change of perspective. Are we seeing “the family,” if it is indeed a family, as the shampoo bottle sees them?

    09. Anything about the speed of the “grab” communicate something to you? Is the robed person inside the shower or outside? You don’t say.

    11. Does she jump into the scene from the shower? What’s with her hair? Significance to the towel draped over the tub? I agree this is the same bathroom (and that the logical conclusion is that it’s the same family). We now understand the whole layout. Just a thought: since the bottle in the “woman” scene is inside the shower, and dripping wet, is it possible the girl was showering while “mom” was doing her makeup? Or is this an accidental coincidence? One more thing. So far, only the girl has used shampoo, that we have seen.

    12. Nicely done. (It also makes a face 🙂 to me.) That label is partly peeled too. Good catch on the dried shampoo crust detail!

    13. You can’t assume your reader is seeing everything you’re seeing, mildew. “The bottle is replaced” sounds magical in your version. Spell out the technique and identify, if you can, the person who replaces the bottle. Hands? Manicure? Rings? Clothing? Jewelry?

    14. Where’s the recycling can, do you suppose? Describe how you know what the can is, even though it’s visible in your frame.

    15. What’s the “rhetorical” reason for the fade? Same person holding the comb? Or can’t you tell? Does it matter?

    16. All your comments have been thorough and observant, mildew, but I’ve usually found something missing. Here I think you said it all. (Prove me wrong! 🙂 )

    18. Funny about the smirk, but GRAMMAR: (Misplaced Modifier) Your sentence says that “the shot” is one of the creepiest smirks in existence. Not exactly what you mean. Is there any way to tell he’s looking in a mirror? Is he wearing a tie?

    22. Mention that the boy was mimicking dad, “combing” his hair even though he did not have a comb of his own?

    23. Agreed.

    25. Agreed. I love “revived” since it indicates renewed “life”! Very clever. I think you’re missing one attitude though: that the garbage wanted it. The shampoo bottle wants to be recycled. Why do I say so?

    28. “” tells us that the shampoo bottle has a wish to be revived. Don’t you think? Does this add any persuasiveness to the idea that the scenes are shown: from the bottle’s perspective?

    You can update this post with revisions if you wish, or you can wait until next Tuesday and incorporate them into a new post for your Visual Rewrite (I haven’t posted the assignment yet, but you know it’s coming.). Or you can do both: revise this, then make additional revisions for your Rewrite. No need to reply unless you want to. You’re doing fine.


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