Last evening, while watching what now passes for "news", I sat through a new commercial for the new, Mitsubishi…"whatever". LIke every other automobile commerical currently running, it featured the car as the addition to the proper, targeted (insert name here implying young, urban, upwardly mobile) lifestyle.
There should have been people in the commercial — happily enjoying the ride, but thanks to the miracle of modern computer image manipulation and animation, only walking, talking "collections of personal accessories" including cellphones, sunglasses and headsets actually walked over from the curb and got in the car to drive away.
The people were rendered invisible, just their accessories were seen. In other words, you are what you …buy.
I guess the idea was that for the targeted market, this vehicle is just another accessory that confers status upon the owner by virtue of their having purchased it. Yes, and of course, using it, plainly, for all to see. What’s missing was the owner.
Of course, it didn’t offend me personally, as it was clearly targeted to a much more acquisition-oriented, younger market. It made me laugh at first, then I began comparing it to other equally ridiculous automobile advertising, such as "My Name Is Ram. My tank is full." I mean, who was the genius who penned that trainwreck, anyway? But if I were in my late 20s, and strove upwardly to attain the proper position in life, I would have been offended that "I" didn’t really count so long as my money could be spent. Man as credit balance.
I really hope that my grandsons can appreciate how transparent this is all becoming. At least in my day, the marketeers and hucksters gave you a show along with your snake oil. Now, you’re expected to begin valuing yourself based upon which products you fall prey to. That doesn’t bode too well for the future, does it? It seems to set us up for the day where the job of the self-appointed Gohhead will be to churn out a variety of products, and our job as the new serfs will be to gobble them up. Bon Appetit!