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Katy Perry’s ‘Part of Me’: Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers



Katy Perry's 'Part of Me': Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers

In her music video ‘Part of Me’, Katy Perry ditches her wigs and latex dresses to put on a Marines uniform. While some might find this style change “refreshing”, the video for ‘Part of Me’ has a very specific agenda: To entice young people to enlist in the military. We’ll look at how ‘Part of Me’ is a three-minute long advertisement to recruit new soldiers for the U.S. military.

Katy Perry is usually known for wearing blue wigs and sexy dresses, but she gives it all up in Part of Me. Yup, watch out terrorists, Katy Perry is an army girl now. While “pop culture observers” welcomed Katy Perry’s image change, qualifying it as “refreshing”, most missed an important fact: In Part of Me, Katy Perry is used to push yet another agenda of the elite – the recruitment of young people into the military. If we look at it objectively, Part of Me is, in fact, a three-and-half-minute long “Join the Military” advertisement disguised as a music video. It contains all of the components found in regular TV ads for the Marines and any other army-related ads: cool high-tech war machines, excitement, and action, being “All You Can Be” and so forth. But most importantly, it presents the military and, by extension, war, as the perfect escape from the bummers of regular life.

The video was shot at an actual U.S. Marine base, using actual Marines, which means that the video is truly a “sponsored message” from the Marines. By appealing to young people using singers they look up to and themes they can relate to, the U.S. military is looking to address an important issue: Getting more young people to enlist. There is indeed a growing need for fresh blood in the military as the U.S. government and other Western countries are putting intense pressure on so-called “Axis of Evil” regional powers such as Iran and Syria. The numerous military expeditions of the past few years (Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya), and increasing calls to bring home enlisted soldiers who have done multiple tours of duty means that as the U.S. prepares for upcoming conflicts, new soldiers are needed to enlist and be shipped abroad. Instead of paying for a 30-second TV commercial, military marketing specialists probably realized that they could get better results by investing in the music video of a star that is popular with teenagers. While regular “Be All You Can Be” TV commercials were effective in the past, today’s young generation watches less TV and more YouTube. So why not use pop stars who get hundreds of millions of YouTube views and who are already used to push other aspects of the elite’s agenda?

Not a New Concept

Katy Perry's 'Part of Me': Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers

A 1917 Uncle Sam poster used to recruit soldiers during WWI

Governments have always used the most advanced forms of mass media advertising to entice citizens to enlist in the armed forces. During World War I, the face of Uncle Sam was plastered all over the United States in order to recruit new soldiers. However, as the years went by, and television made its appearance, posters of the bearded fellow pointing at you with a stern look somewhat lost its effectiveness.

During the 1950s, although mandatory drafts were in full force, the military still looked for opportunities for good PR. When Elvis Presley, the hottest and most controversial artist of the time, joined the army as a regular soldier, the press was given “full access”, and were even allowed take pictures of him in his drawers while getting weighed in.

Katy Perry's 'Part of Me': Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers

Elvis’ career as a soldier was highly publicized, as countless pictures of him flooded mass media.

Elvis’ immense charm, charisma, and popularity gave the army great visibility, successfully enticing young people of the rebellious “Rock’n’Roll” generation to be interested in the military.

Since the 1950s, marketing techniques have improved in both efficiency and sophistication. In fact, today, the best advertisement often parades itself as no advertisement – in the advertising industry, messages are known to be received more effectively when indirectly reaching an audience that believes it is being entertained. To achieve this, celebrities and pop stars are often used as vehicles to reach the minds of young people with specific messages without them even realizing it. Katy Perry’s Part of Me is an example of this technique, as nowhere in the video does it state that it is an advertisement for the U.S. military. Perry’s video was simply used by the military to reach its target audience–teenagers approaching the age of enlistment–but the whole thing appears as if it was a “creative” decision of Katy Perry the Artist.

Watching Part of Me immediately reminded me of the Simpsons episode where Bart and his friends were chosen by a producer to form a boy band. The group’s hit single was Yvan Eht Nioj, which was “Join the Navy” in reverse. It was later discovered that Bart Simpson’s group was used by the Navy to push subliminal messages to young people in order to get them to become soldiers.

Katy Perry's 'Part of Me': Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers

Party Posse’s music video featured the group doing cool army things in Iraq such as driving dunebuggeys and flying jet fighters.

While Perry’s video relies on overt imagery rather than subliminal messages (as far as I know), Part of Me is based on the same agenda as portrayed in the Simpsons: To reach teenagers using the great appeal of pop stars. Let’s look at the most important scenes of the video.

Part of Me

The video begins with a concept most teenagers can relate to: Heartbreak. Katy catches her boyfriend kissing another woman. so she barges in and breaks up with him.

Katy Perry's 'Part of Me': Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers

Katy walks away from her douchebag boyfriend. Although the video is basically a commercial for the United States military, it begins with a relationship-related scene in order to make the video relatable and to give it an emotional element.

Katy then drives to a gas station. She is very mad, confused and impulsive, so she obeys to the first advertisement she encounters. I bet marketers would love to have more people like Katy.

Katy Perry's 'Part of Me': Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers

When Katy reads this actual US Marines sticker, she is immediately sold.

When facing heartbreak, some people might try to feel better with a chocolate fudge sundae or maybe a nice walk around the block. But in Katy’s case, she joins the US industrial-military complex and gets trained to fight guerrilla warfare abroad. Don’t get me wrong, I have respect for soldiers in the military, but I think a life-changing decision like joining the Marines should not be made in a moment of emotional frenzy.

Nevertheless, Katy makes this decision, cutting her hair in a boyish fashion and trading her Blackberry for a Marines uniform.

Katy Perry's 'Part of Me': Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers

Katy is now the property of the U.S. military complex.

The rest of the video is very similar to armed forces commercials seen on TV where big guns, big machines, and scenes of hardcore combat training are presented in a dynamic matter to appeal to young people who are bored with their lives. The lyrics of the song are cleverly mixed with the images of the video to make the advertisement even more effective. For instance, when Perry sings “I just wanna throw my phone away, Find out who is really there for me”, she is seen with her fellow soldiers, implying that her Marines buddies will never let her down.

Katy Perry's 'Part of Me': Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers

Katy burns a letter from her boyfriend (representing her old life) while hanging out with her Marines buddy. He’s REALLY there for her. The camaraderie between soldiers is an important selling point to help recruit personnel and is heavily promoted in this video.

When Katy sings: “I fell deep and you let me drown, But that was then and this is now … Now look at me”, she is shown firing a rifle as if it was a great accomplishment. Yep, look at her:

Katy Perry's 'Part of Me': Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers

Katy is now in a military base, shooting a rifle and will most likely be shipped to a war zone in the near future. Take THAT cheating boyfriend, that’ll show you!

During the bridge of the song, Katy sings “Now look at me, I’m sparkling, A firework, a dancing flame, You won’t ever put me out again, I’m glowing, oh woah oh”. During that time she is shown patrolling a mock Middle-Eastern village, used for real-life military training for guerrilla warfare simulations. This is another clever association between the song’s lyrics and the images in the video, provoking a positive association between the two.

Katy Perry's 'Part of Me': Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers

Katy, you say you’re “sparkling” but you’re being trained to fight guerrilla warfare in the Middle East, which is known to be extremely bloody, violent and often involves civilian casualties. So, yeah, I’m not sure that “sparkling” is the best word to describe your situation.

Later in the video, the positive and uplifting words of the chorus are mixed with all-out war scenes involving soldiers running, tanks rolling and helicopters flying. There’s definitely some cognitive dissonance here because, in case some people don’t know, war is NEVER positive nor uplifting. It is ALWAYS terrible, violent and horrifying. However, in order to recruit new soldiers, advertisers need to make the whole “military experience” appear wonderful.

Katy Perry's 'Part of Me': Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers

Katy is now caught up in the business of war, where death, mutilation, horror, and trauma can get in the way of conquering Third World countries for resources and power. But hey, at least Katy’s douchebag boyfriend isn’t there!

So, in short, discovering that her boyfriend is cheating on her has Katy Perry enlist in the Marines, to be trained for combat, and, ultimately, be used as cannon fodder in conflicts she likely doesn’t fully understand. The elite seems to be looking for lost youth to fight their wars. Was Part of Me an Illuminati-sponsored message to find new recruits for its armed branch, the U.S. military-industrial complex?

Katy Perry's 'Part of Me': Using Music Videos to Recruit New Soldiers

A single eye above the trigger of a gun indicates that this military-themed video is a product of the elite’s agenda … who happen to have a bunch of wars planned in the coming years.

In Conclusion

Watching a bit of “international news” is enough to make one realize that there is currently a lot of pressure on “bad” countries such as Syria, Iran, and Uganda and that public opinion is being prepped for new military conflicts. The prospect of future wars, along with the countless existing warzones around the world, is generating a great need for new soldiers military in the U.S. and other Western countries. Since military drafts are no longer an option, new and innovative ways are being used to reach the army’s target audience (teenagers) and to get them interested in enlisting in armed forces. Katy Perry’s Part of Me is an obvious Marines recruitment advertisement disguised as a music video, with the Marine’s “cool” weaponry, intensive training and soldier camaraderie all presented in a dynamic and appealing matter. The military and war are presented as ideal escapes from life’s bummers, like a cheating boyfriend, and geared to appeal to a generation of bored teenagers. But is war really the perfect way to forget about a bad relationship? Go ask a war veteran.


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once youve seen documentary "beyond treason" you will know some of the story the recruiters shall never mention. beware it is very graphic.


Ii think the Simpsons Episode was actually trying to show how this things work…

EX female marine

Jesus said, ” thou shall not KILL “. Now what part of that scripture, does anybody, not understand! This includes you “born again” (claiming to love Jesus) christians. You join the military, you kill someone, dont think your going to heaven, I dont care what country your serving. If you kill someone you take away they’re chance of becoming born again. Jesus said, “No sin enters heaven”. Guard your heart, don’t fall for these hidden agenda videos, that put ideas in your mind, to destroy your soul.


The commandment is thou shall not murder moron. Try reading the real Bible instead of the English state church/satanic text. God commands his people to beat their plows into swords in the Old Testament and helped David to invent guerilla warfare. Furthermore, if you allow devil worshiping muslims to murder your fellow Christians because you refuse to kill them, YOU are not showing your brothers love


if you look at (3:16-17) she is obviously throwing up the illuminati symbol toward the audience/the viewer.


I think she just makes one or two nonsense videos in between her satanic sex slave ones and uncle sam capitalized on this one to recruit millenial snowflake replacements for all the Christians that have left or been kicked out of the military


They have to recruit loyal slaves to the NWO because us patriots discharged after Obummer became pretender in chief


She flashes the devil’s horns in a close up shot, the same thing she also does in Last Friday Night video.


When I started reading I was instantly reminded of Malcolm in the Middle. Reese joins the army immediately after he discovers Malcolm cheating with his girlfriend Beth, just after organizing a lavish romantic gesture for her.


Any time I see an ad for armed forces, all I can think of is that episode of the Simpsons lol Seriously though, I've heard of recruiters flat out lying to get ppl to join.


Perhaps I was slow in reading this, it's been up for a while. Well, as soon as I read it I went to YouTube trying to find the full episode of the Simpson's that wasn't super speedy. No luck, though I did find clips of the songs. In one, 'drop da bomb', you can see members of the audience doing the triangle signs with their hands, as well as much one eyed winking. Just found it rather interestingly blatant, considering the show is "their's"…. Illuminati.


that simpson episode scared me a bit but now my eyes are open…


Any updates on this now that woman are allowed to fight on the front lines? I wonder if any women enlisted "just in time"


Oh, in case any of YOU forgot. Your "despotic" country is the sole reason why the world as we know it today isn't either N--i or communist. Right! If you distrust your country so much, why don't you all migrate to North korea or china? I bet you'd all have a grand time in their JAILS for even daring to criticize the government. Geez, talk about ignorant ingrates.


The Xbox360 dashboard has had a Join the Marines ad running for the past few days now. For some reason, the first day I saw those ads was also the first day I stumbled onto this video (via the Xbox360, btw). I chortled nervously. In response to abdiel, the U.S. is already engaged in a proxy war in Syria and I think it's obvious that they have Iran in their gunsights. Syria may not effect Army personnel such as yourself, but it is still war. With all the extra military drills and added deployments in the South China Sea and the western Pacific, I wouldn't be surprised if planners at the Pentagon have China in mind for the despotic future as well.


i got a question reading..i joined the army recently..and the part where you said there are more wars coming..which in your opinion do you think those will be?


Is anyone here pro military? Could someone please suggest how exactly the military is suppossed to advertise in a way that pleases everyone? I thought joining the military was an honorable thing to do. I thought that defending freedom was something to be honored.


JD has the right idea! The military is here to protect our country. I grew up in a military household and I would not have had it any other way. So what if Katy Perry makes a music video where she joins the military? The article suggests that any advertisement for the military is wrong. If there is anyone who is brainwashed, it's the faithful followers of this website who will believe anything they read. Besides, if a Katy Perry music video is what's going to start manipulating youngsters to make decisions, then I am very sad for this generation.


Soldiers fight and die for our right to free speech. I don't support the current administration, but I do support our military. I don't see what's wrong with them using what works. Throughout history the military has had to use one form or another type of propaganda to incite people to accept an occupation that may get you killed but, in the final analysis, is absolutely necessary to preserve this countries freedom from those countries who would take it away. That freedom is for all people regardless of race, religion, social, or economic class. We all benefit. How many countries do you know that have the quality of life that middle class Americans take for granted? Seriously, we own houses (even if the market is going through trouble) and 2 or more cars and multiple televisions and computers and have the right to complain about who's in charge without getting woken up in the middle of the night and dragged out into the street to be shot. I give high praise to Katy or any other celebrities who convince people to do the right thing by serving in our countries armed forces. Again, I'm not happy about the politics, but… Read more »


I just saw katy's video "wide awake" and i immediately thought "oh I really should check out VC, I'm sure it has an article about it", but there was only one about "a part of me"… I guess "wide awake" speaks for itself and is pretty obvious…


The first thing that came to my mind when reading this article was that episode of The Simpsons using subliminal messages to get people to join the navy! Astonishing!


Actually it is about her trying to get out, if you done your real research on the illuminati and listen to the lyrics you will see that she explains how she wants to get out. Obviously if her video was made like this then the illuminati would have her as a target to be killed. She isn't in charge of producing the music video so those sick elite freaks probably added their subliminal messages in their. Listen to the song once again, recognise the lyrics and you will see she is trying to get out. Also listen to her new single 'wide awake'. Plus if you want more research then youtube 'music industry exposed' and watch the 2hr documentary. Maybe this video is to signify her fighting against the illuminati's. I believe she is now finding the light.

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