Calling all SOBs (Supporters of Bill, as in Clinton, and you know who you are). Warner New Media, in association with Epicenter Communications and Amazing Media, has something you may want. It's a new multimedia, photojournalistic CD-ROM that chronicles Bill Clinton's run for the White House, from the then Arkansas governor's entry into the presidential race, through to the new President-elect's jubilant acceptance speech 13 months later. Called Clinton: Portrait of Victory, the CD-ROM is a collection of text, audio and images (and on the Mac version, film video) based upon Time magazine's award-winning photographer P. F. Bentley's often candid snapshots of Clinton, wife Hillary, daughter Chelsea, running mate Al Gore, and Clinton aids, strategists and long-time friends as they work their way across the U.S. through primaries, Gennifer Flowers, the draft bruhaha, the Democratic National Convention, and the final whirlwind days of the campaign.
With the candidate's full cooperation, photojournalist Bentley traveled with the Clinton entourage, able to capture the private moments and stories that no one else on the campaign trail could. Added to the public stops and personal appearances that Bentley also photographed, Clinton: Portrait of Victory provides a complete profile of Clinton's boundless resilience as he dodges would-be setbacks and stands up to scandals, winning over enough Americans along the way to vote him and his call for change into the White House.
Divided into three major themes, "The Assignment," "The Candidate," and "The Campaign," the CD-ROM looks through the camera lens at a wide range of events that contributed, sometimes hindered, but never stopped Bill Clinton from realizing his lifelong dream of becoming president of the United States. Enhancing Bentley's photographs are an audio and text prologue by Vanity Fair and The New Republic contributing editor Roger Rosenblatt, captions by Rebecca B. Taylor, executive editor for Epicenter, and an epilogue by Michael Kramer, chief political correspondent for Time. Original music composed and performed by Keith Metzer is also heard throughout the disc.
Each main theme of Clinton: Portrait of Victory is made up of several categories. In "The Assignment," viewers can go "Behind the Scenes" or examine "The Image Mysterious" with short photograph montages. Roger Rosenblatt's text "In Black and White" is here as well, delving into the idiosyncrasies and ironies of how the public saw the campaign and some of the prevalent issues that made the headlines. Within "Bentley's Craft," viewers catch more private glimpses of the candidate as as narrative captions explain each photo. For instance, when shown a shot of Clinton in the sauna, viewers learn that this "steamy" scene took place during the Democratic Convention as Clinton tried to moisten up his battered vocal chords shortly before accepting his party's nomination. These shots also give the camera buff detailed information about how the photograph was taken - the lens used, film speed, exposure time, etc. The last sub-entry, "On Location," is itself split into three photo collages of "Dogged Pursuit," "The Drill," and "Going Home."
Out of the three themes, "The Candidate" hones in most on the Clinton persona and mystique, but also digs beyond the public image. Michael Kramer's "On Being Tough," which amasses 14 screens of text, studies the tenacity that kept Clinton going when everyone - from pundits to pollsters, Republicans and Democrats, and foes and supporters alike - thought he was finished. Kramer writes about Clinton's trademark pursed lip that could signal deep thought, extreme satisfaction, or consuming anger, and emphasizes examples of the times Clinton's toughness withstood the mightiest blows, while also revealing a tender side of Clinton seldom seen by the general populace. In "From His Speeches," separated into "The Declaration," "Victory I," "Victory II" and "Victory III," viewers can hear actual excerpts from Clinton's speeches and addresses, while watching related photo selections. "The Man from Hope" is a three-page biography of the native son whose now history-making life began on August 19, 1946.
It is "The Campaign," Clinton: Portrait of Victory's final theme, that gets down to the nitty gritty of it all. There are five sections in this theme: "The Primaries," "The Convention," "On the Road," "The Debates," and "A Bold Finale." All help to best illustrate how the highs and lows of Clinton's 13-month odyssey came together and reached a pinnacle on Tuesday, November 3, 1992. Each of the five sections provide a quick pictorial "Preview," a more in-depth "Photo Album" of 40 to 80 captioned prints, with each telling a little story, and "Milestones," which records and rates each significant event - good or bad - that unfolded during the campaign. From "The Primaries" the viewer sees Clinton as a regular guy playing pool, a father helping his daughter with algebra, the "Comeback Kid" celebrating his first victory in Georgia, dealing with the ROTC hot potato in February of '92, and doing a balcony rehearsal of "Heartbreak Hotel" for his June debut on The Arsenio Hall Show. In "The Convention," Al Gore enters the picture (literally and figuratively!), Clinton first speaks of making a "new covenant" with the American people. Ross Perot drops out (temporarily) of the race, and by July 20, four days after becoming the Democratic candidate for president, "Milestones" proclaims that Clinton has surged 24 points ahead of Bush in the polls. "On the Road" shows clips of "Bill and Al's Excellent Adventure," and helps explain how Clinton earned the nickname "robo-candidate," which in turn often prompted bleary-eyed members of the press corps to chant "Get in the car" when Clinton's planned or impromptu stops took too long (in their opinion). In a foretelling shot, "The Debates" starts off with a picture of Clinton watching the first Kennedy-Nixon debate in 1960, and then shows Clinton in action October 11th at Washington State University, St. Louis, followed by what may well have been his most positive, persuasive performance four days later at the "town hall" setting in Richmond, and winds up in East Lansing, Michigan where Bush finally came to life and stopped checking his watch. "A Bold Finale" provides a few lighter moments in the last days, including Clinton playing a game of Ping-Pong with Hillary and reacting to a risque card from a secret service man who had finished his "tour" with the "Eagle," the code name for the soon-to-be president. "Milestones" reports that polls show Clinton to be the candidate people believe most cares about them, and "Photo Album" concludes with shots of Clinton's fly-by-day-and-night last hours of the campaign, of the unofficial winner watching the election results, and finally, the President-elect greeting the frenzied throngs on the steps of the Governor's Mansion after Bush had conceded on election night.
All movement from screen to screen throughout Clinton: Portrait of Victory is done by a single touch of the mouse or a key - namely the arrow keys, page up, page down, or the return key. Clear instructions appear on each screen and a help key is accessible at all times. Even first-time CD-ROM users will have no trouble maneuvering with ease through the disc.
The Clinton: Portrait of Victory CD-ROM is available for DOS 16 and 256 color systems, as well as for the Macintosh 256 color system. The DOS system requires 640K or greater of RAM, a VGA 16 or 256 color card, and a Soundblaster or compatible sound card. The Macintosh version requires at least 4MB of RAM, system 6.07 software or greater, and a 13-inch monitor. All versions of the CD-ROM sell for $39.95 and are available in software stores across the country or by calling Warner New Media at 818/955-6477. An in-print version of Clinton: Portrait of Victory is available in bookstores or by calling Warner Books at 212/552-6982.
If you're a Clinton fan with pack rat tendencies, Clinton: Portrait of Victory is the answer for you. Now you can bold on to all your campaign and election memorabilia in one neat little CD-ROM. This SOB gives Clinton: Portrait of Victory two discs up.…