Example 1: a character running through a building shooting 10 people with a handgun is ONE sequence.
Example 2: if a character lands 3 uninterrupted punches, code 1 sequence of violence. If a character lands a punch, then hits his enemy with a club, and then punches him again, the methods were interrupted and 3 sequences of violence should be coded.
Also, receiving violence does not count as an interruption to a violent act (i.e., character X punches character Y, character Y hits character X with a club, character X punches character Y again) – the punching is still considered uninterrupted and this should be coded as 2 sequences of violence (1=punch + 1=club).
Poisoning is considered violence and is considered penetration with non-contact weapon.
When coding for large scale violent segments either use the term “brawl” for scenes with less than 100 characters (bar fights, small scale riots) or use the term “epic” for scenes with more than 100 characters (war battles).
Only count as “sequences” violent actions that actually cause harm to an individual (e.g., do not code for missed punches, only punches that hit the person). Violence not shown on screen is coded on the “modeled violence level” scale (consequence/aftermath sequence), but is not counted as a sequence unless the violent act is directly depicted on screen.
0 = No Violence – Coded only if no violence occurs in the segment.
1 = Low – The result of violence shown (e.g., a dead body), but the act of violence itself is not shown. Includes representations of injuries, such as maimed, disfigured, or dead bodies; characters bleeding; pool of blood.
2 = Somewhat – Includes two forms of portrayal:
(a) Unarmed violence in the form of punching, kicking, pushing with intention to harm but without depiction of blood, bodily penetration, or murder;
(b) Or use of weapons (bullets, swords, knives, poison, etc.) with consequence implied but not shown (e.g., man heard being shot but not shown).
3 = More – Violence, including the use of weapons, to inflict blunt force, but without bloodshed. The act must be depicted on-screen (i.e., a character is struck by a bat). Includes portrayal of murder.
4 = Very – Includes two forms of portrayal:
(a) Level 3 with bloodshed or
(b) Use of a weapon that penetrates without bloodshed (e.g., person murdered with no blood shown).
5 = Most – In addition to level 4, violence resulting in penetration and bloodshed.
Any character that commits a violent act or exchange. Code for every character involved in initiating or retaliating against violence.
Any character at which an act of violence is directed. Code for every character that receives any violence.
Code anytime weapons are used violently. Punching, kicking, wrestling, or other hand-to-hand combat is not considered using a weapon. Anytime a character uses any object in a violent manner (chairs, broken bottles, poison, etc.) code it as a weapon present.
Only code for representations of injuries, not implied injuries. The injury must be depicted on the screen separate from the violent action. (For example, if a character is shot, this is not an injury depiction. If the character is shown bleeding or dead after the shooting takes place, this is an injury depiction). Code only for the highest level of injuries depicted.
Three levels of injury, based on Browne et al., (2002):
1 = Mild – representation of bruises, lacerations, or broken bones
2 = Moderate – representation of bodies maimed, blinded, impaired, or disfigured
3 = Extreme – representation of fatally wounded bodies (body shown)
Any character dies in this segment as a direct or indirect consequence of a violent act. Unlike the injury scale, the dead body does not necessarily have to be shown (e.g., a person dies in a car explosion) for a fatality to be shown.
Violence is intended to cause laughter or comedy in the scene, or violence that is not done with the intent to cause serious harm. This is strictly slapstick comedy (e.g., Three Stooges).
Code for aggressive content in a dwelling or non-dwelling location.