Murrow Vs V Speech Comparison

Andrew Paek Block 4


Edward R. Murrow was an American broadcaster who mainly became famous during the Second World War; he was famous for being truthful during his news broadcasts. V is the protagonist for the film V for Vendetta. V is a "terrorist" that disagrees with the political views and he wanted a change. V and Murrow both felt that there was injustice, unfairness and neglect in their societies. They felt there was something wrong in their society and it had to change for humanity.

V's Purpose Murrow's purpose

V's purpose in doing the speech on BTN is to show the reality and to organize a night of revolution. V is stating that we enjoy the security and the tranquility of repetition; we do not like to face any discomforts and we will knowingly give up out freedom in exchange for obedience and submission. According to V’s speech “I do, like many of you, appreciate the comforts of every day routine- the security of the familiar, the tranquility of repetition". The people of Britain want a routine because a routine means safety. V lets Britain know that he understands their fear in his speech by saying “I know you were afraid. Who wouldn’t be? War, terror, disease” V wants Britain to see that the government is controlling the minds of the people and oppressing them. V asks the citizens of Britain to stand along beside him and stand up to the government, stand up to the unfairness and injustice, “but if you see what I see, if what I feel, and if you seek, then I ask you to stand beside me… and together we shall give them a fifth of November that shall never, ever be forgotten". V thinks there should be an uprising of the current government because it is going against what they stand for as a society, and not to conform to the governments rules. V wants people to stand up for what they believe in and that they should make a difference. Although the government may have physical force, words are the non-physical weapon, for example, this is portrayed in the film when V is being shot and says "beneath this mask there is more than flesh. Beneath this mask there is an idea, Mr. Creedy, and ideas are bulletproof." If you are trying to find someone to blame only look at yourself to blame, fear has led you to be silent and obedient. V calls for a call of action on November the 5th.

Murrow wants to enlighten the viewers of television channels and radios so they would be able to see their ignorance and how it has overtaken the generation of the late 1950’s. Murrow wants the society to become more aware of the ignorance and the outside world. Murrow’s call to action is to persuade the readers to use their “instruments” such as the TVs and radios to their advantage and use it to its full potential; in an excerpt by Murrow he states “this weapon of television could be useful. These instruments can teach, it can illuminate – and yes it can even inspire… otherwise, it is merely wires and light in a box”. Murrow is worried that his society is mistreating the gift of the television by indulging themselves with entertaining programs rather that informing themselves about the outside world and important news such as problems that were occurring such as the education system in America. Murrow sees society as ignorant and complacent with no knowledge of reality, “we are currently, fat, comfortable and complacent. We have built an allergy to unpleasant or disturbing information”. Murrow believes that society has built a wall around them where they see only what they want to see. Murrow’s purpose is to persuade his audience to inform themselves and to make them see how they themselves have enslave themselves to useless information, “but unless we get up off our fat surpluses and recognize that television in the main is being use to distract, delude, amuse and insulate us”.

Similarities, Differences between Murrow and V

V's and Murrow's speeches both talk about society hiding from the truth. V mentions how the city of London has hidden way in fear and ignorance behind an idol, which will protect them from the truth, V states "I know you were afraid. Who wouldn’t be? War, terror, disease. There were a myriad of problems which conspired to corrupt and your reason and rob you of your common sense. Fear got the best of you, and in your panic you turned to the now high chancellor". Murrow also talked about society hiding away from the truth when he says," we are currently fat, comfortable and complacent. We have built an allergy to unpleasant or disturbing information". People have accustomed themselves to comfort and will hide their eyes from reality in time morrow’s fear will come to light were society will become ignorant as a whole. In addition both V and Morrow blame society for the problem that has occurred or will develop. Murrow says “We have built and allergy to unpleasant or disturbing information. Our mass media reflects this”. The public has chosen to be ignorant.

One of the greatest differences between Morrow and V’s speeches is their calls to action. Murrow wants his readers fight against ignorance and against intolerance when he says, “there is a perhaps decisive battle to be fought against ignorance, intolerance and indifference”. Morrow wants to attack something that cannot be destroyed with physical strength but is more of a concept. Murrow wants his audience to “get off our fat surpluses” and realized they have become ignorant and take the initiative to do something about it. On the other hand V wants the people of London to stand up and face up the corruption they face and the abused dealt by the government when he states," but if you see what I see, if you feel as I feel, and if you will seek as I seek, then I ask you to stand beside me". V is asking London to physically fight beside him and overthrow the British government. V’s call to action wanted to stand up to the government and resist the government abuse. V’s struggle against the government’s injustice is currently happening. On the other hand Murrow’s fight hasn’t happened yet, he is trying to prevent the downfall of society before it is too late by convincing society to start changing now, “but unless we get up our fat surpluses and recognize that television in the main is being used to distract, delude, amuse and insulate us, then television and those who finance it, those who look at it and those who work at it, may see a totally different picture too late”. Murrow wants to prevent a conflict in the future and so is mission is to enlighten people with his ideas in hope that they will listen.


Both speeches have similar goals throughout, but changing the mindset of humanity in order to create a better future was prominent. Both want the best for their society and are willing to speak out of abnormality and comfort.

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