The projects Nuclear Nightmares: Twenty Years since Chernobyl and Marlboro Marine were two which had a hand in revolutionising the way stories were told. They challenged the social norms, where people believed it was best to be short and sweet when reporting a story and introduced new ways in which you could interact with the audience.
The Marlboro Marine project depicts the story of Marine Blake Miller and his journey from joining the Marine Corps and returning, and the effect the entire experience had on him. His story coincided with photojournalist Luis Sinco and their connection was told in a 16 minute video, however the video consisted of pictures and voice over, rather than actual footage.
I suggest if you haven’t seen this project yet, you definitely should. It is incredibly moving, perfectly encapsulating the consequences of war but not in terms of its effects on a country, but rather one single person. Personally, I don’t think that is shown quite as much as it should be. Understandably the focus is generally always on a country, and we never really hear much regarding those who actually go to fight for their country. When we do it always them being branded as a ‘hero’, rarely do we see the true trauma they have to live with.
The Marlboro Marine focuses on this aspect. It shows the life of Blake Miller before he became a Marine and how different it was after he become one. The still images combined with the voice over provide us with a confronting image. As the video goes on you can hear the change in his voice regarding what his life is now and what it used to be. Something that I don’t think could have been shown in a normal video or just images without a voice over.
The second project, Nuclear Nightmares, is arguably more interactive than Marlboro Marine. This is simply because while the latter is simply a video audiences can watch, Nuclear Nightmares requires the reader to scroll over images to find more information, and even on particular words.
The images found in Nuclear Nightmares are also quite captivating, possibly because they are in black and white and thus imply a somewhat negative ending for those in the photograph, especially when you look at the title of the project. Nuclear Nightmares was also one of the first projects to go viral through email.
My personal favourite of the two projects would have to be the Marlboro Marine. There was never a moment where I wasn’t captivated by the story being told and I believe that was because of the WAY it was told. However, in terms of which project I feel was more interactive, I would have to say it was Nuclear Nightmares. This is due to the fact that it constantly prompted the readers to scroll over the pictures to find more information, it wasn’t just handed to them.
Ultimately both projects have played a huge part in the methods of multimedia storytelling and the case for either being the better one can be made.