This week we had to do the assignment “Video Essay” for The Wire (5 stars). Boy was it worth five stars. This assignment was a lot of work. Rather than doing a discussion of Seniority in one episode, I made mine pretty much a discussion on a theme that is throughout the show but I focused on Season 1. It would have been way too much to do it throughout the whole show. It was something that I tracked pretty thoroughly throughout season one but then focused a little less on it in season two and beyond. So anyway, I discussed the theme of seniority throughout season one of The Wire in my video essay.

How I did it:

Well at first I was getting frustrated because I couldn’t find the scenes that I wanted on YouTube. I didn’t know that you could download the episodes from the wire hub site. So once Groom told me that, I downloaded the episodes that I needed (which took a while because I was on the school wifi–bad idea). I then went through the episodes to find the scenes that I had notes on that I wanted to talk about. I got these notes from my notes on the different episodes, specifically the scenes talking about hierarchy or seniority. Once I had all of the scenes that I needed I imported the first episode into Windows Live Movie Maker and trimmed it down to the section that I needed. I used the trim tool and then the set start point and end point tools. I did this for all of the scenes that I needed.

Once I had all of my scenes, I needed to record what I wanted to say about them. I opened Audacity so I could record my speaking parts. I recorded them all. I then split my screen between Movie Maker and Audacity so I could situate my talking so it coincided with the beginning of each scene in Movie Maker. This was pretty easy. I just clicked on the beginning of the scene in Movie Maker to see what time the scene started at and I used the time shift tool in Audacity to move the words to where I needed them to be. Once I did this with all of my talking parts, I selected all and amplified them so they would be louder. I then exported it as an MP3 file and imported it into Movie Maker. I made sure everything matched up. I had to adjust the volume of the videos so that you could hear my talking over the dialogue in the scenes but so that you could still hear it when I wasn’t talking. It took a little adjusting to figure that out but it wasn’t too hard.

I then exported the video and uploaded it to YouTube. Here is the final product: