Consumers buying a pair of Levis jeans are buying a piece of America

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         Page         5/1/2007

Media Coursework - Levis Advertisements

Original Essay Question: “Consumers buying a pair of Levis jeans are buying a piece of America”

        Discuss the effectiveness of Levis TV advertising, considering these points:

  • The concept of Mythical America
  • The elements used in the advertisements (of Mythical America)
  • How they have been constructed

Refer, in detail, to at least 3 advertisements


        The first of the Levis Advertisement appeared in 1984 but they are still being produced today. The 12 adverts that I have studied range from 1984 to 1990. The ‘Bartle, Bogle and Hegarty’ Advertising Company produced the original Levis jeans adverts in many different languages. These advertisements where originally aimed towards men between the ages of 15 and 19 years old, an age range often referred to at the ‘Younger Generation’. During the time of their production, Levis were becoming more and more associated with the idea of being “parent’s clothes” and so Levis where in need of advertising that could bring jeans back to the youth population. Because of this it is often apparent within the advertisements of the idea of Mythical America and what America and Levis jeans supposedly has to offer. As a simple way of persuading consumers to buy the jeans they used the theme:

        “Consumers buying a simple pair of jeans are buying a piece of Mythical America.”

        As the paragraph above mentions it is apparent that the ideas of Mythical and Youth America are the main themes of most, if not all, of the adverts and due to this there are things that each ad has in common.

        The music used in the separate advertisements contributes greatly to the atmosphere within the storyline often giving a sense of mystery in the mood as well as an impression of ‘sexiness’ and youth romance. These songs also give the idea of freedom and youthful rebellion common in Mythical America. Many of the adverts also have another similarity in them such as the ideas of independence and escape gained by the wearing of Levis jeans, shown by many appearances of riding into the sunset and being taken away from a boring office and constricting societies. Also to be noted in almost every advert is the absence of dialogue, this is mainly due to the intent of an international market (this is not the case with “Eddie Cochran” in which there was an over-voiced narration). This idea of an international market shows the intent of spreading the Mythical America theme internationally. Captions throughout each of the adverts also have a common element as they all have relevance to the content of the advertisement.

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        Also in each advertisement are common motifs and ideas that all contribute greatly to the influence of Mythical American society. One of these is the different body actions and dress sense unique to each individual character in the adverts that represent the same things at a basic level. Things that are sometimes easy to notice within the advertisements include direct eye contact that is apparent in most ads. This expresses the idea of intimacy and seduction as well as an interest in each other, but sometimes it represents conflict (this is mostly so with the ‘younger’ and ‘older’ generations). ...

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