I get so involved in what I watch on TV that commercials for me aren’t an aside, aren’t separate, but they’re part of my entertainment. So I actually expect to be entertained by my commercials. They don’t have to be funny, they don’t have to be emotional, they don’t have to be inspiring, but they better be something.
Even though I didn’t see them yet today, I love the Emmerson inspired and inspiring Levi commercials, Dow’s the Human Element campaign is like watching a National Geographic magazine on TV, some Bud Light commercials are funny, Coke has some great ads, so does Mastercard. Local ads never stand a chance, like a Menards spot or local news preview. And today, Subway didn’t really perform and neither did Cisco.
Subway signed Phelpsy (Michael Phelps) recently and I’m all about it. I love Phelps and I love the Olympics. I love the Olympics. The worst thing in entertainment though is when you underuse somebody. You’ve got the most successful Olympian and best swimmer of all time with Michael Phelps and instead of having him do anything cool, you make a computer animation of him swimming out of his local pool and out into the street (still swimming, actually swimming through concrete) and then swimming through wheat fields on his way north to Vancouver. For the Winter Olympics. I guess Subway thinks they started an ice swimming event up there in British Columbia, or that we’re stupid enough to just see Phelps and think, “Yay, Michael Phelps is going to that Olympics again.”
I’m going to interject here because I’m writing this live. I hate almost all car commercials equally, but I especially dislike the Denis Leary Ford Truck commercials. He’s soooooooo cooooool, the way he’s sarcastic at me about some truck. Congratulations.
So Cisco. I usually like the Cisco commercials where the rich American students play games with the Chinese students over satelite. Today, Ellen Page joined the class. It felt a lot like when you throw a really famous guest star on a TV show even though it doesn’t make any sense. I’m going to paraphrase here (this commercial doesn’t deserve to be quoted directly).
Teacher: Kids, this is Ellen Page.
Class: Hi, Ellen Page! We’re going on a field trip to China.
Ellen Page: Hi kids. So you’re going to China, huh. Ha. China. I think there’s something sarcastic I could say here, but…well, anyhoo. I used to go to a farm. For my field trips.
Class: No, we go with the TV to China!
Ellen Page: Ciscoooo.
Ellen Page should go to China. I don’t think they want her.