Skip to main content

divisive ads

i've never been into american football. i'm not much of a sports fan in general, but even on my scale, football (a misnomer if ever there was one, since it features neither feet for most plays, nor something that meets the standard definition of a ball) falls just above basketball near the bottom of my list of things i'd like to watch.

time was, though, that i'd get a kick out of seeing the ads that aired each year. after all, thanks to apple (formerly apple computers), this became the place to showcase your company's awesome creative talents, with lengthy spots purchased at the cost of a poor nation's gdp. and i might add that seeing said advertisements took some talent if you weren't a fan. in the pre-internet age, you had to keep bouncing back, hoping to catch the ad breaks, or you'd be doomed to watching three-second outtakes on the eleven o'clock news.

it's been years since i tuned into what's been happening with those ads. i know that watching them, commenting on them and rating them has become a sort of cultural pass-time, as relevant to america as the game itself. (it's 1:30 in the morning, i don't know who won, if you needed further proof of my lack of enthusiasm for football.) the super bowl ads are still huge and flashy, i know, but they're cost-prohibitive to any but the largest corporations (which i'm not condemning- i think it's reasonable that the nfl should sell their advertising for as much as they can get) and furthermore, there are often more interesting ad campaigns being carried out on line.

there are often controversies about the ads, some of which have the power to create a real furor. then you have this year's apparent controversy about groupon (an online discount vendor) and the appropriateness of their ads. are they cheeky winks at charity advertising? or were they a crass attempt to flog a commercial product through mocking legitimate charities? there's no way that they didn't know these ads were going to piss some people off, but maybe that's part of the point. after all, groupon might be eager to build their profile in a hurry by any means, after a an alluring proposal went sour and their former suitor is rumoured to be plotting to destroy them if they can't have them.

the ads were created by no less a talent than christopher guest, who is certainly no stranger to deadpan humour.

so what's your opinion? too far? fair game? everyone else is speaking up, so why sit on the sidelines? (see what i did there?)

Comments

as long as you're here, why not read more?

jihadvertising?

i keep seeing this ad for tictac candies:



am i the only one who finds the suicide bomber clown at the end a little unnerving? all the nice natural things like the bunny and the [extinct] woolly mammoth and the fruit get devoured by a trying-to-appear-nonthreatening-but-obviously-psychotic clown who then blows himself up. congratulations, tictac, i think this ad has landed you on about a dozen watch lists.

oh and by the way, showing me that your product will somehow cause my stomach to explode in a rainbow of wtf makes me believe that doing consuming tictacs would be a worse dietary decision than the time i ate two raw eggs and a half a bottle of hot sauce on a dare.

making faces :: chanel's velvet realm

who doesn't love velvet? i know when i was younger, i used to, as george costanza longed to, "drape myself in velvet" and although that phase passed with time, i still think that the plush fabric has to be one of the high points of human achievement, up there with interior heating, advanced medicine and vodka. so to me, it's no surprise that one of the most hotly anticipated launches in the cosmetic world is chanel's new "rouge allure velvet" lipstick line, because even the name immediately makes me want to put it on my lips.

on a more concrete level, chanel describes these lipsticks as "luminous matte", which is sort of like the holy grail for lipstick lovers. we all want those intense, come-hither film noir lips, the sort where young men and sunlight are lost and never heard from again, but historically [including during the making of those films], applying a matte lipstick felt sort of like colouring in your lips with an old crayon that had…

eat the pain away?

nearly twenty years ago, an emergency room doctor took a look at the crushing muscle tension i was experiencing [they were clenched enough that a doctor at my regular clinic couldn't get a reflex reaction on my left side and thought i might be having a stroke] and told me she believed that i had fibromyalgia. a couple of weeks later, i went to see a family doctor that a coworker had recommended to me. when i told him what the other doctor had said, he snapped that i was being ridiculous, because, if i'd had fibromyalgia, "i wouldn't be able to move". after i moved to toronto, i got a new family doctor and told her what the other doctors had said. she said that she couldn't be sure, but it was better just to deal with any symptoms i had one at a time. then i came back to montreal and got a new family doctor, who didn't really buy into the whole idea of fibromyalgia and said there was no way to do any definitive test anyway. that doctor passed away, and my …