As an average person who enjoys the occasional television show, and, just like anyone who has ever enjoyed the brain numbing effects of spending an hour or so in front of the t.v., I too have a deep rooted despise for the one thing that constantly detracts from my favorite shows, those damn commercials.
Every once in a great while I’ll admit there are some commercials that I might refer to as clever or a good ad, but sadly due to the unrelenting redundancy of these ads, they go from clever to unrelentingly annoying after the third viewing in an a half hour time slot. As a result I consider commercials to be the leading cause of lowered brain activity and ADD and the world. To counter this, I have started hitting the Mute button every time a commercial comes on. This has helped reduced my instant and uncontrolled distain for companies and their products, and in turn makes my life a much more relaxed and groovy experience.
I’ve noticed that my intense dislike for commercials has made me a bit more critical about ads and the message they are trying to convey. One commercial campaign I’ve noticed lately that seems incredibly poorly devised is the one for Miracle Whip.
In the one commercial I’ve seen it plays out a parody of the Scarlet Letter, but instead of a big red A on the lady’s chest there is a red MW instead. The other puritans in the township seemed moved to possible inflict harm on her for being a Miracle Whip supporter, and in the end she is saved by the town preacher who too has a MW fetish and has been hiding the red MW red letters pasted on his chest under it over coat. The commercial ends with the slogan “Keep and open mouth.”
Yes, ha ha, very punny using this play on words for the phrase ‘keep an open mind’. You commercial people must be so proud. Hey Kraft, if people literally keep an open mouth, guess what? No one is ever going to eat any of your products! It’s a stupid slogan and makes absolutely no sense. If you really want to get people to buy your (in my opinion) nasty product how about making an ad that says if you purchase Miracle Whip you will be entered into a drawing and the winner gets flown to L.A. for the sole purpose of repeatedly slapping the person that came up with the ‘Keep and open mouth’ ad campaign. Hell, I might even purchase a few bottles to up my chances at winning that honor.
And while I’m not the subject, Miracle Whip? Really? Anyone else find flaw in this name? When I think of those two words together as the subject of conversation, a miracle whip is what I could call Indiana Jones’ second all-time most important accessory, only a notch below his hat, and not a pigmently challenged goo that has the same consistency as the filling of a three year old lemon flavored Hostess Fruit Pie.
I suppose if they whipped a bunch of random ingredients together to create a mayonnaise substitute and made millions of dollars as a result, then yeah, I might call that a miracle. Still, that miracle happened after they had named this substance. So it still doesn’t really fit. At least they didn’t call it ‘I Can’t Believe It’s Not Mayo’, because anyone who has ever tried this produce can believe it’s not mayo. Likewise, at least they didn’t try to combine the tangy element of the product with the name of the substance they are trying to replace, so jars with names like Tangonase, Maytang, or Mayotango never made it to the store shelves. So, I guess in that regard, we all owe Kraft a miniscule amount of thanks.
If you love it, hate it, or are completely ambivalent toward it, I hope that we can agree that their ‘Keep an Open Mouth’ campaign truly is in poor taste.
Google Images, keywords: Miracle Whip
Copyright © 2012 Richard Timothy
So last night, my cutie-baby-sweetie-pie-wifey-pooh was getting ready for bed, i.e. brushing her teeth, washing her face, etc. and as she was finishing up I walked in and noticed that the counter around the front of the sink was covered with water. This begged the question, do people actually wash their face like you see in every face cleansing/acne preventing/makeup removing commercial ever made?
You know the one (since they are essentially all the same one), a female with her hair pulled back out of her face, stands in front of a freely flowing faucet. The woman cups her hands together and fills them with water and then tosses it right into her glistening clean face. This is done in slow motion mind you to add to serenity of the whole experience, because slow water hitting you in the face has a feeling of peace, but at regular speed it just looks like you are trying to give yourself a nasal enema. As the slow motion continues we see water splash across and off of the woman’s face . . . and all around the rest of the bathroom.
Whenever I see those commercials, I always want to see what happens next, you know the minute or so after this happens when the lady’s roommate, spouse, lover (whoever really) walks into the bathroom sees water all over place and asks, “Why do you keep washing your face like that? Now get the mop and clean this mess up!”
Apart from the slow motion tossing of water, I think how the way the lady has closed her eyes is the other thing I struggle with in these commercials. Their eyes are always lightly and serenely closed, like in those commercials where people are smelling a hot cup of their morning coffee. I get that the point of marketing is to sell, not just a product, but an idea or image associated with the product, but these commercials lead me to think that clearly the marketing gurus in charge have never ever seen a woman wash her face using their product. Here is process as I’ve witnessed it over the years:
- Start with the extended duration of running the faucet to make sure the water temperature is the perfect face washing temperature.
- Tilt at the waist so the face is directly over the sink.
- Cup hands and fill will water.
- Squeeze eyes tightly shut then place face into hand cupped water.
- Release the cupped hands so the water (mostly) falls back into the sink.
- With eyes still tightly closed, fumble around the counter until you find the product you will be using to lather up your face.
- Lather up your face. Note: Eyes are still tightly closed.
- Fumble around the counter to find a dry washcloth.
- Dampen washcloth with the perfect-face-washing-temperature tap water (still running).
- With eyes still tightly shut, begin vigorously scrubbing face with the moist washcloth.
- Drop washcloth in or somewhere around the sink.
- Cup hands again and fill with water.
- Bring hands full of water up to your face, eyes still tightly closed, and let the water drop off face and (mostly) back into the sink.
- Repeat previous step until all the sudsy face product is removed from the face.
- Stand up straight and, with eyes still shut tight, feel around behind you until you come across a dry towel.
- Use towel to dab remaining moisture from face.
- Face the mirror and blink repeatedly until eyes adjust to the lights.
- Return towel to rack.
- Locate discarded washcloth and use it to wipe down all random puddles around the sink.
Congratulations, your face is now clean; it is officially time for bed.
See in all of that there is no serene face, or lightly closed eyes. It is a vigorous scrubbing process with a product that warns you not to get it in your eyes, or mouth for that matter, which is why the face is always tightly squinched up during the entire face washing ordeal.
I’m not expecting this Smirk to inspire any change in the marketing world, but it would be nice if they occasionally tried to exercise a little creativity when it comes to washing your face. You know a fresh, maybe even clean, perspective on the matter.
Google Images, keywords: washing face and face washing commercials.
Copyright © 2012 Richard Timothy
Every morning on my way to work I pay a random twenty to thirty minute visit (depending on traffic) to my six button collection of saved radio stations, but this morning I noticed something. It’s something that has always been a part my radio listening experience, but it was something that I’ve consistently ignored, that is until this morning. Usually when a commercial comes on the station I am listening to I simply switch to a new station, but this morning…oh the horror! This morning it just wouldn’t stop! It wasn’t happening on just one station, oh no! This vile airwave virus had infected three of my stations at once.
What the hell am I talking about? I am referring to the greatest defecation of the commercial creating marketing universe, the cesspool of pure evil that is the song parody commercial. Ewwww. I feel dirty just thinking about them. And not the “good” kind of dirty either, but the “I just pet a nappy 15 year old three toothed ally cat that smells like its been sleeping in its own urine for the past seven years and I have to wash my hand as soon as possible so it does not get infected and has to be amputated” kind of dirty.
Ah, the song parody commercial. Nothing says “The owner’s talentless kid is in charge of our marketing” quite like the song parody commercial. I do feel it important to point out one thing though, and that is I am not against the concept of the song parody. I mean, I do owe more than one fit of adolescent giggling do to a certain Al of the weird variety, especially his metamorphosis from Bad to Fat. I have likewise enjoyed a number of song parodies from the comedic world, but this is not what I am referring to here.
My gripe comes from bastardizing something that was once a song I enjoyed dancing to at my high school home coming 18 years ago and turning it into a humorless tool to sell some crap product. Ok, to be fair maybe the product has some value, but I would never know. You know why? Because when I hear a song parody commercial the only think I can think is “Crap, pure, cockroach covered crap.” This includes the product associated to the commercial as well.
My other gripe is that usually the original song was popular and overplayed and has definitely worn out its welcome, unless you are having an 80’s themed party. Now, thanks to the parody you have a crap song, stuck in your head, using some new crap lyrics, peddling some crap you’ll never want. And when you get to work you are stuck humming the song while you get caught up with your morning emails.
Like I said, it’s usually not a big deal, and it probably still wouldn’t be if I hadn’t experience that Bermuda triangle of song parody commercial gruesomeness. So, here are a few tips if you find yourself in this same type of situation:
- Change the channel.
- If a song is playing, any song will do, let out a sigh of relief. You are now safe.
- If the new channel is also playing a song parody commercial, in an act of exclamation against this, loudly verbalize your favorite word of profanity, and go to step one.
- If the second channel change results in another song parody commercial, loudly express your disapproval using a collection of profanity that would cause someone with turrets syndrome to tell you that you have a problem, and go to step one.
- If the third channel results in yet another song parody commercial, TURN OFF YOUR RADIO. Three strikes are all it gets. Your radio has lost the right to be heard. Then, depending on your philosophical background, either get a priest, some crystals, or hand gun and perform an exorcism on your radio.
As I drove in silence this morning, the only thing I found that helped was the hope that the companies responsible for those commercials did not get the rights to parody those songs and that the original artists, find out and sues them for copy right infringement. And if you happen to make a few calls moving things in that direction once you get to work, I’d just like to say on behalf of the entire human race, “Thank you for doing your part to make the world a better place for us all.”