Post #3: Narrative Perspective

I will be analyzing the music video for Rick Springfield’s song Jessie’s girl from a narrative perspective.

“Jessie’s Girl” was released in 1981 and recorded by Rick Springfield, an Australian musician. This song is about the narrator having a crush on his friend’s girlfriend but not telling either of them about it. The goal of the text is to convey the emotions of the narrator, since he is bottling up his emotions and not telling either of the other two characters in the narrative.

The narrator of this artifact is a man, portrayed by Rick Springfield in the music video, who has a crush on his friend’s girlfriend. The narrator says, “Jessie’s got himself a girl and I want to make her mine”. But he also tells the audience that he is keeping the crush a secret by saying, “I play along with the charade / There doesn’t seem to be a reason to change” and “I wanna tell her that I love her / But the point is probably moot”. His distance from the relationship is shown through physical distance in the music video (0:08). The narrator is in the foreground narrating while Jessie and his girlfriend are in the background talking to each other.

The list of events in the narrative are the narrator introducing the problem, various scenes of the narrator being around the couple but not being too close to them, a scene where the narrator is reflecting on his crush in his bathroom and he sees his crush in the mirror, he then breaks the mirror with his guitar, and in between all of these scenes there are scenes of the band playing the song.

The casual relations are when the narrator talks about his problem which leads to various scenes of the narrator not being too close to the couple. Then the scene where he sees his crush in the mirror, which leads him to break it.

The other scenes are paradigmatic. There are scenes when the camera focuses on the musicians of the band playing music, which it not affected by the narrative. The scenes with Jessie and his girlfriend seem to be flashback examples that prove the narrator’s point.

The intended audience is teenagers. Springfield choose to convey this message with music paired with the video. At the time this text was released, music videos were very popular among teenagers considering MTV aired the same year as this song.

The moral conveyed is that keeping things a secret from people will eat you up inside and also don’t have a crush on your friend’s significant other.

This artifact may communicate to teenagers that if they have a crush on someone, they should tell them, which may not always be a good idea in all cases. In the song, the narrator doesn’t tell Jessie or his girlfriend because he is afraid to lose his friend.

Music video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qYkbTyHXwbs

 

Lyrics:

Jessie is a friend, yeah

I know he’s been a good friend of mine

But lately something’s changed that ain’t hard to define

Jessie’s got himself a girl and I want to make her mine

And she’s watching him with those eyes

And she’s loving him with that body, I just know it

Yeah ‘n’ he’s holding her in his arms late, late at night

You know

I wish that I had Jessie’s girl

I wish that I had Jessie’s girl

Where can I find a woman like that

I play along with the charade

There doesn’t seem to be a reason to change

You know, I feel so dirty when they start talking cute

I wanna tell her that I love her

But the point is probably moot

‘Cause she’s watching him with those eyes

And she’s loving him with that body, I just know it

And he’s holding her in his arms late, late at night

You know

I wish that I had Jessie’s girl

I wish that I had Jessie’s girl

Where can I find a woman like that

Like Jessie’s girl

I wish that I had Jessie’s girl

Where can I find a woman

Where can I find a woman like that

And I’m looking in the mirror all the time

Wondering what she don’t see in me

I’ve been funny, I’ve been cool with the lines

Ain’t that the way love supposed to be

Tell me, where can I find a woman like that

You know, I wish that I had Jessie’s girl

I wish that I had Jessie’s girl

I want Jessie’s girl

Where can I find a woman like that

Like Jessie’s girl

I wish that I had Jessie’s girl

I want, I want Jessie’s girl

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