Analyzing the ad for HBO’s 24/7

This report was written for my Writing for Business and Industry class at Temple University.
The ad that was analyzed. Click for a larger view. (ESPN)

The ad that was analyzed. Click for a larger view. (ESPN)

In the middle of the December 20th edition of The Hockey News magazine, an ad can be found for the HBO four-part miniseries 24/7 Penguins-Capitals: Road to the NHL Winter Classic.  It can be easily deduced that the ad is featured specifically for hockey fans due to the magazine it was in and because the show surrounds the Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals NHL hockey teams, but the ad can also be used to entice other sports fans or other people in general with the hopes that the readers will pass the ad around.  The ad will appeal more to Canadians, who are a hockey-eccentric culture, and the large fan bases of Pittsburgh, PA and Washington, D.C.

All of the text on the ad is entirely in capital letters, making it bold and eye-catching.  The title of the show is placed directly in the center of the ad and is basically impossible to miss.  The only change in text color is the top, which is white, but it is more than likely due to the fact that black lettering would be hard to read against the darker background, and the bottom with the blue HBO logo.  The blue color draws the eye to it for the reason that no one will miss what channel the show will be broadcasted on for people to prepare for it buying a package or a reminder for those who already have it.  Also in bigger letters by HBO is the date.  To make it more eye-catching, the date should have been a different color other than black.  It is much easier to accidentally skim over with it being the same color as the majority of the other text.

The pictures are the best part and give the most connotative messages in this ad.  The background features a football stadium, just like what the teams will be playing in on New Year’s Day.  The stadium gives a feeling like the Coliseum in Rome, Italy.  The stadium and rink on the field have a blue tint to it, making it seem as if it is a cold setting, like it more than likely will be that day.  The sky features a sunset, not because of the time of the game, which is at 1 p.m., but instills a feeling of fire.  The whole background is a setting of these players being gladiators going off to a fiery battle in the Coliseum.

The most curious portion of the pictures is the placement of the photos of the two teams.  On top of the title are the Pittsburgh Penguins, while below are the Washington Capitals.  On either team’s “side” features two pictures: one with two or more players and the other with the captain.  The captains are alone, signifying how life may be as a captain of an NHL team.  Both captains have a serious look to them, almost worrisome in a way, and concern over how their team is doing.  The team pictures are more joyous with players smiling, almost as if they have an easier time and less stress than their leader.

The most interesting part of the pictures is the overall placement of the teams.  The Washington Capitals are on the bottom, whereas the Pittsburgh Penguins on top.  Why couldn’t the teams be evenly dispersed between the top and bottom instead of the team together?  It makes the Penguins seem as though they are above the Capitals, maybe not even just the standings, but how they are viewed in general.  To prove the point more, Sidney Crosby is sitting atop alone, looking across the page towards his teammates like he is watching over them.  Alex Ovechkin, on the other hand, is positioned in such a way that he is looking up the page, directly in the direction of Crosby, who is arguably his biggest rival in the National Hockey League.  It seems as though Ovechkin is below Crosby in talent and skills and his desire is to become him or achieve the same level that he is on.

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Categories: Ice Hockey, NHL, Sports

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