Morgan Spurlock’s documentary Supersize Me focuses on the impact of fast food and its effects on your health. During the viewing of this documentary film, a number of elements related to Burke’s views regarding rhetoric were evident. Morgan appeared to be identifying with the audience in an attempt to unite them and show that we could all work together to face the dangers of fast food. Supersize ME used identification, symbols, terministic screen, and many other techniques to help viewers understand the issues caused by fast food.

Morgan Spurlock, the narrator of the documentary, was trying to convince others of the harmful effects fast food has on our body, as well the obesity epidemic in America. Spurlock vows to eat Mcdonalds every day for 30 days straight in this 100-minute film. He also promises to sample everything on their menu. He sets himself a set of rules to help him complete the project. The rules were: he had to buy everything at Mcdonald’s, he had to supersize every meal he ordered, and he could not exercise.

I was impressed by Spurlock’s documentary. He wasn’t just trying to entertain, but to also make the audience aware of the dangers fast food poses to our health. I think that he showed the transformation of his body during the entire process. Morgan started out as a healthy person. He gained around 25 pounds by the time the project was over. He also became depressed and his cholesterol shot up. I thought that documenting this entire experience helped to make the rhetoric more effective because it supported Mark’s claims and gave viewers actual proof. The fact that Mark was able to document his experience from beginning to end was crucial to the rhetoric. It supported what he was trying to show the viewers and gave them actual evidence.

Spurlock uses a sarcastic tone that is sure to keep the audience engaged. He was concerned about the impact of fast food on the body and wanted the audience to be aware. His choice of words also kept viewers’ interest because they were entertained and felt relatable to the topic.

The documentary is largely a rhetorical piece, as much of the content has an impact on viewers. Morgan chose to film himself and demonstrate how much sugar and fat he ate. This was the part I felt had the greatest impact on viewers.

Pathos and logos were used frequently in the documentary. Ethos are also used in the documentary, but it seems that Logos & Pathos have a stronger impact on the viewer. Logos involves persuading an audience using logic. Persuasion with facts and statistics is one example. Morgan used statistics to prove and convince the audience about the problems that Fast Food causes in America. As an example, Morgan claimed that America had the highest obesity rate in the entire world. Over 60% of the obese were adults. Statistic also showed that 40% of American meals were fast food. I think that logos have a greater impact on the audience because you show proof of what’s going on. Spurlock did exactly this.

Pathos is the appeal of emotions to persuade someone. Pathos has been used often in this document because, as anyone who has watched Supersize Me knows, it tends to make you feel disgusted. My parents were shocked when I told them that I had become a vegetarian after watching the documentary. Spurlock uses emotions to engage the audience and keep them wanting more.

The documentary used other rhetorical devices to catch the audience’s attention. Children and adults with obesity in America were asked to talk about the impact it had on them. They also talked about what foods they enjoy and what their occupations are. This is a termistic screen. Most people see only one side of it, but this is just one.

I feel that this really touched Spurlock, so he felt as if this documentary was a good way to persuade viewers in changing something within our society and having it under control in the ways you could control it. Spurlock felt this was an issue that really affected him, so he thought this documentary could be used to influence viewers and convince them to make changes in society. This could be achieved by not consuming it as often, not purchasing it for your child, or even not supporting its use. Spurlock lost 25 pounds in 15 months, which I believe showed how it affects your life. Spurlock’s documentary was a success because he used many rhetorical terms to convince and inform viewers about the need to change our society in order to stop obesity in America. The documentary Supersize Me has a profound effect on people. It transforms the way that they perceive fast food.


  • arthurmacdonald

    Arthur Macdonald is a 39-year-old educational blogger and school teacher. He has been a teaching assistant for 10 years, and has taught middle and high school students in the Atlanta area for the past 5 years.