As a journalist, the concept of storytelling plays a major role in my life. It is my job as a reporter to give an honest and accurate account of daily activities, but to also make it interesting and pertinent to the audience. Not a lot of people out there can successfully do both, but those that can have some incredible work to show for it.
When I think of storytelling, Carrie Underwood’s “Just a Dream” is one of the first things to come to mind. While not an example of storytelling through journalism per se, the music video, and the song itself, does an excellent job of entertaining, while also showing the brutal truth to military marriages. It is and always has been one of my favorite videos to watch.
Beyond the words to the song, which are incredibly powerful on their own, the visual effects used in the video and the layout as a whole are a work of art. This is especially true near the end of the video. What stands out to me most is the transition from white to black. From happy to sad. From life to death. The change happens so effortlessly, and without even needing to hear the words of the song, the audience knows exactly what happened.
Carrie Underwood also tastefully adds dialogue to the video that isn’t a part of the original song. This addition, although perhaps not absolutely necessary to the plot, helps the audience a great deal in connecting with the characters. Being able to see how she interacts with her military husband makes the emotional reaction to the video so much stronger. If the audience was left alone to only see Carrie’s reaction to the life and death of her hero, it would be entirely one sided. Viewers wouldn’t care nearly as much.
All stories, as with journalism, need to be seen from all perspectives. Carrie Underwood’s music video for “Just a Dream” does an excellent job in showcasing these requirements.