too much typing—since 2003


Our Consumer Selves Projected

What I can't explain, exactly, is why we decided to tape this year's Super Bowl so we could watch the ads. Perhaps a recently dead cultural-studies theorist briefly possessed us, I don't know. Anyway, Monday evening was spent fast-forwarding through the game itself to see what engines are slated to drive the American economy in the next year.

Evidently, the answer is: adolescent-minded boys. Some conclusions: I did not know until now that Bud Light thinks many twelve-year-olds are in their potential audience. An ongoing theme: animals (monkeys both humorous and interspecially amorous, dogs with unfortunate teething preferences, bears with sugar addictions, elephants justifiably frightened by small vehicles, delusional donkeys, farting horses, and wolves raising humans with less interesting results than Romulus and Remus). Also: "erections that last more than four hours may require professional attention":...oh baby, don't I know it. (Someone should tell Sting, who, it turns out, was indulging in time-honored guy behavior, by drunkenly bragging to impress another guy, in this case His Holiness Bob Geldof.) Football fans apparently dwell in a perpetual 1963, based on observation of the gender roles portrayed in these ads. And: some men love their razorblades entirely too much - which only proves the prescience of Saturday Night Live, who parodied the arms race in multibladed razors way back in the mid-seventies. As a sentimental favorite, I liked the Simpsons ad. Because I actually am a yahoo who laughs at gags Adam made up, such as the timeless banana-peel pratfall, the 7-Up million-dollar dunk ad had me laughing out loud. And the H&R Block ads, with the advice-giving Willie Nelson doll, not only was pretty cool just because, hey, it's Willie Nelson - but also because of the in-joke fact of Willie's tax troubles. And amongst the spam-makes-TV plethora of erectile dysfunction products, we have a new winner in the "weirdest sexual metaphor" category: chunky, middle-aged, mustachio'd ex-coach tosses footballs through a tire. Oh yeah baby - that's super sexy. It reminds of those guys who put a pissing Calvin on their pickup truck back windows directly above the words "My Ex-Wife" - and then wonder why they can't get a date.

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