Reading The Pictures is dedicated to the analysis of news photos and media images.
March 1, 2008

Last Minute Shadow Of Doubt



With Obama potentially on the verge of the nomination, it seems a bit of a fear meme has crept into the media narrative.  In light of a steady stream of “aura inspiring” images which have been regular newswire fare for at least the past month (exemplified by the top shot above), the new TIME cover represents a decided turn.

MIrroring yesterday’s Clinton “red phone” ad, challenging voters to question the well being of their children in the hands of such an unknown factor as Obama, TIME’s cover visual for the “son of Super Tuesday” edition, as well, casts Obama as an anonymous figure who is more apt to stifle illumination.

Although the accompanying article has more balance to it, questioning how much to weigh experience as a presidential criteria, especially in relation to character, when it comes to the cover pic — and the possibility Obama might become the true hope after Tuesday — this image leaves us fumbling in the dark.

Does Experience Matter in a President? (TIME)

‘Red phone’ response could decide Texas (Politico)

Red Phone video (at

(image 1: Jessica Rinaldi/Reuters. San Marcos, Texas February 27, 2008. via YahooNews.  image 2: Alex Brandon/AP. 2007.  TIME Cover. Mar. 10, 2008.

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