I am a Patriots fan. Because of this, I have watched the ‘Tom vs. Time’ social video series that was broadcast at the end of last season on Facebook Watch. Even if you aren’t a football fan, you may have seen these videos as they were prominent on Facebook in the weeks leading up to the Super Bowl at the first of February. The last release in the series was Chapter V and was released the day of the Super Bowl.
The thing that stays with me about how these videos play is that they are very visually impressive, with top production quality and visual design. After losing in the last seconds of Super Bowl LII, I assumed the series would take a hiatus. Apparently, the hiatus is over.
The intents of this video are to promote the next segment of the Tom vs. Time video series, to promote Religion of Sports, and Tom Brady’s personal brand. In the last years of his remarkable NFL career, Tom has been building a health and wellness brand and its marketing strength is tied to his longevity and success as an NFL quarterback. This branding effort is directly stated by the video series title: ‘Tom vs Time’. The timing of this video is intended to bring back the brand to market consciousness after the aftermath of the loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl LII, and as Tom ramps up to begin another season as an NFL quarterback.
The production quality of the videography is high. Most shots are in thirds or ‘not-half’ composition and use camera focus technique to direct the eye. There is a nice ‘question and answer’ sequence that is a common technique for filmmakers as a narrative technique. This happens when the focus shifts from left to right which is where you get ‘question and answer’. It’s usually used in conversations.
The music along with the slow-motion footage is also an integral part of setting the mood of dealing with a loss in the Super Bowl. The interview with Brady and the apparent lingering impact of the loss carries weight and sets up the mood of the video rather well. The shot could have been much better though.
The opening shot seems lifeless and the audio sounds muffled. The composition is dead center and the colors are also too drab. There needs to be a splash of color somewhere. The shot can almost be left out and the video would likely be as successful.
You might accuse me of being a too much a fan of Brady’s to see this objectively and you could be right about that. Despite the flaws in the first shot, I do think this video is effective in bringing the brand back to the awareness of the market and keeps Brady and his ground-breaking career in the minds of fans and casual observers.