September 3, 2008

RNC Wednesday Wrap-Up: Mothers And Forefathers

Palin Mt. Rushmore

Helping bridge Sarah Palin’s self-avowed  (and clearly evidenced) pit bull role, the RNC flashed large scenes behind her evoking the American landscape. There was a soaring shot of the arch in St. Louis, another of farm fields, still another of a ferris wheel at dusk.

My favorite, though, was Palin juxtaposed with Mt. Rushmore.  Reminiscent of this classic Rove move (or this folly the NYT WIR concocted right after Bush’s second inaugural), the association was meant to visually bestow a little more gravitas, a connection that much more amenable because of all the Alaska mountain imagery also ubiquitous this week.

You can never tell exactly how precisely those TV cutaways are tied to specific parts of a speech, but my tweet on this one read: Extra-long isolation shot of Palin with Mt. Rushmore on the mega-screen (while attacking “the old boy network”).  If the timing was intentional, it seems that the gender contrast might have been still another part of the package.

Actually, although I didn’t much evidence tonight of a Hillary comparison, the shot also brought this in mind).

Update: Rachel Hulin, the “blog stewardess” at Photoshelter, wrote me about one more Palin backdrop I happened to miss.  It’s the lead one in her post.  It’s a wonderful blend of allusions — both to faith (“Old Faithful”) as well as a phallic, if naturalistic expression of power.  As I read more about Palin and her temperament, the analogy to explosion (akin to McCain’s own wiring) also seems fitting here.

(image:  Reuters.  caption: Republican vice presidential candidate Alaska Governor Sarah Palin speaks at the 2008 Republican National Convention in St Paul, Minnesota, September 3, 2008.  linked image: NYTimes Week In Review 1/23/05; images: Bettmann/Corbis and Paul Morse/White House via Getty Images)

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Michael Shaw
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