Monday, May 17, 2010

Advertisements As Literature

Do TV advertisements that tell a story interest you?

Are you interested in the unstated subtext? Do you ever wonder what the political or social views are of the person who wrote the ad?

Don't get me started on the dirty old man who lists his medications as he jogs, and grins as he boasts (by implication) that American taxpayers are paying for his erection-producing pills which he takes for the benefit of his girlfriend who is in her sixties.

Notice the implied advocacy on public television during prime time of sex outside marriage, and drugs for recreational use.

I almost got started, didn't I?

What about the BDO advertisement. Not only is it excruciatingly obnoxious, it is... interesting as an indictment of affirmative action.

For those who haven't seen it, here's this incompetent young chick with a little-girly voice and one of the most unprofessional attitudes I've ever seen. She has obviously been promoted way too soon, way too far, because she is a woman and young.

"Did you hear?" she gossips to a much older male colleague and informs him that "we" have to issue a restatement. Not "they". "We". "The effective tax rate.... it was way off."

She stammers a little. I can believe that she was the person responsible for the effective tax rate calculation being way off, but she verbally distances herself from that.

"How off is off," the mature gentleman inquires patiently.

She cannot give a straight answer. Instead, she goes for the sensational.

"O'Reilly hit the roof."

The bottom line is that the hotshots within the company fouled up, so an outside consulting firm is being hired to clean up the mess.

To me, this ad says less about the merits of the consulting firm, and leaves me wondering whether or not the advert copy writer thinks there are a few "Have you heard?"-type inexperienced kids in corporate America who are in positions for which they are not qualified.

1 comment:

Pauline B Jones said...

I look at commercials so differently than I used to. I dissect them and think about what I see behind them. Sometimes I'll look at the "story" and then laugh when we finally get to the punchline: the product.

I'm probably their worst nightmare. LOL!