Monday, May 16, 2011

LISTENING TOO HARD: Another Article About Ads

Apologies for the non-Tickety post.

But one thing that the faithful P1 hears on The Ticket is lots of ads.   I've heard a couple recently that reminded me of something I've wondered about for awhile.  I think we have some Confessors in the ad biz, so perhaps they can weigh in.

My question is:  Why would I ever want to buy a product that is promoted by a repulsive character?

It's been a long time since The Ticket ran this series of Mitsubishi ads, but I'll bet a lot of you remember them.   They featured a guy whose voice sounded like he had been gargling asbestos who would call up citizens and berate them for not taking advantage of Mitsubishi's latest deal, or for not owning a Mitsubishi.  He treated the people he called like idiots.  He was mad at them for their choice of other cars.  Offensive by any standard.  And this wasn't just a single series of ads -- a new batch would show up every once in awhile.   Not blaming The Ticket -- you heard the ads all over. 

Mitsubishi may make a fine vehicle.   My not buying one is unlikely to influence its choice of advertising themes and pitchmen.  But I wonder how many other people reach the same conclusion.  I Googled "gravel voice mitsubishi guy" and the first hit I got was a site called "" where one observer wrote, amusingly, "I boycott even thinking of purchasing one of their vehicles.  I don't know why they continue to do the same thing every couple of years, but this is one voice over I'd like to punch out if I saw his face.  Most annoying radio commercial."   (This site does not condone violence even against fictional assholes.)

I thought of this recently in listening to the Kingsford Charcoal commercials.  A Kingsford Charcoal fan calls up his buddy in Minnesota and mocks him for his unfortunate choice of places to live.  He describes the pleasures of grilling with Kingsford while chortling over his friend's miserable circumstances up north, interspersed with the poor Minnesota schnook moaning about his unpleasant surroundings.  

I suppose there is a school of commercial thought that says -- if you remember the name, the ad has done its job.  I remember them, you betcha. 

The final exhibit doesn't fall into quite this category -- it's the Bud Light "Here we go!" ads.  The TV ads feature what looks like a black coach who ends the ads by saying "here we go!"  I thought they were really weak -- I haven't seen one in awhile -- but didn't think much more about them.  Now we have the radio version with people about to engage in some fun, fun activity, and, on the verge of its commencement, they holler "here we go!"  These people don't sound dreadful -- they sound stupid, and very unconvinced that the impending event merits the hearty "here we go's" they bleat out.  Didn't beer commercials used to be clever?

End of rant.  Back to Ticket-friendly topics next time.


cancer monkey said...

The black coach in the Bud Light commercials is Carl Weathers, and like an overwhelming majority of commercials these days, they've opted for the over-the-top style that Old Spice has been so visible with these days. I'm a fan of the surreal and a good non sequitur, but these even wear me out.

The style of commercial that I really, honestly don't get is the witty banter between two individuals, one of whom is knowledgeable in a specific product to the surprise of the other. It's usually a husband and wife and the wife is the one that knows a lot about foundation repair or insulation, but it cuts both ways, and sometimes the husband whips out some facts about clothes or feminine hygiene. The Musers have taken to making fun of this style with their Regus spots, but there are a couple "real" ads of this ilk in heavy rotation currently. The thing that crotch-kicks me about these is the way they're written; so far removed from any kind of conversation that any two normal humans would have, so stilted, so awkward, so unfunny, so contrived. I'm not a violent or vengeful person, but I'm hoping for a Promethian torture of eternal taint punches in hell for the hacks that write this crap.

Anonymous said...

Do you also find ads that portray the husband or father or boyfriend as a clueless idiot that is only able to get by in life with the sage advice and direction of the wife, daughter, or girlfriend offensive? I do.

The Plainsman said...

Yes, I certainly do.

Actually, I'm not exactly offended by it, I can take a joke -- I just find it dumb and ineffective after all these years of suffering through them.

White males have taken in the jorts for far, far too long in commercials and elsewhere, especially considering the blessings they have bestowed on civilization. And why antagonize the group that still brings home most of the bucks?

P1 Steven said...

Although we bring home the bacon, we dont always make the choices of where to spend it. I like to leave choices such as banking, cell phone, cable, food to my wife. Im still bringing home the bacon, my decides where to spend it :)

Jeremy said...

Thank God the Mac vs. PC ads have stopped running. Instant blood pressure raiser whenever I saw smug hipster douche Justin Long.

The Plainsman said...

Yeah, but I kind of like that Anne Hathaway clone in the sundress who anthropomorphizes the Mac philosophy on the current series of ads. Never had much luck with Macs, myself.