‘Anyone For A Pint’ Will Return After These Important Words:

Posted: October 27, 2011 in Anecdotes
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Watching a television advert (or, as in this case, an unending slew of them) after pretty much quitting watching TV altogether feels like some sort of culture shock. Not because advertising has changed that much over the years, but because it feels as though one is looking at them through fresh eyes. Catching the remnants of an advert whilst passing the living room doesn’t really cut it compared to watching one after another for minutes at a time. It’s only really after cutting TV viewing out of my life almost entirely that it dawned on me just how absurd the whole notion of mainstream advertising actually is.

It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what it is about them that I find the most absurd. This is not me preaching about how I am no longer susceptible to the mind adjusting methods that advertising employs. This is me simply saying that after watching almost a night’s worth of adverts in one go I am still baffled that marketing executives are still trying to convince us to buy into their merchandise in this way.

To upload an actual advertising image here would only defeat my whole purpose...

For example: adverts still show men and women in very disparate lights. The man: a wind-swept, car driving, football enthusiast who doesn’t understand women and ‘their ways’…and women: body and image obsessed who seem easily placated with the promise of a chocolate bar or perfume. Obviously advertising goes way deeper than just the flickering images on screen, but this whole pigeon-holing of genders is surely a laughable scenario at this point in the 21st Century. With advancing liberal agendas as regards to what men and women can do, wear or the people they can marry it would be illogical to assume that these same people in the ad world should only ever pertain to one certain ideal.

Quickly, how many women do you know live in city-view high rise apartments and relax in the evening by reclining on a couch and munching on a chocolate bar like each bit burns the image of Christ into their retinas? If anyone raised their hand just then may I personally welcome you to planet Earth…

My point here is that whilst watching these adverts I was struck with an intense feeling of genuine unease and embarrassment because advertising moguls still want us to think this way. Again, science will explain in detail how the subtext works by manipulating the alpha part of our minds in order to hit the correct social and base needs (why do you think sex is a key feature in ads?), but the mise-en-scene of what’s on display is surely something that just is not relevant to the vast majority of the people watching it. If relevant at all.

The reason why I got onto this subject is – apart from being a jaded, holier-than-thou sex Cthulu – I recently went to my local cinema for the first time in about a year or two. And I was almost awestruck (read: not awestruck) at the extravagant number of TV adverts on display during the pre-screening. I remember a more wholesome time when going to the cinema to see a film meant a few hours away from anything that remotely reminded you of the television you were probably missing anyway. I think I am inclined to believe what the Cracked.com article says about adverts in cinemas; in that – similar to Alex’s rehabilitation in A Clockwork Orange – the viewer cannot escape seeing whatever is shown on screen. There’s no mute button or way to change the channel. So short of actually leaving the auditorium to get a drink you’re basically stuck watching what is essentially a short film’s worth of Cadbury’s ads.

And you aint leaving to get a drink. That shit’s expensive, yo.

Leave a comment

  1. binaryferret says:

    This blog made me think of this Mitchel and Web point on adverts 😀

  2. Andrew says:

    That’s freaking hilarious! 😀

    “Men! Shave and get drunk!” 🙂

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