Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Coming Soon!!


While you're waiting for the fight to begin next week, here's a few past postings you might want to check out:

You can meet the Unswitchables here.

Is this the last home you'll ever own?

See the use of Fumettis in advertising here and here.

Maidenform campaigns (and their models) get exposed here.

A look behind the classic Foster Grant campaign here.

How many times have you seen this recurring image in advertising?

What's the origin of the recent "Ocean's 11" poster?

Finally, a look back at the risque' American Airlines "Fly Me" campaign.

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Advertising's Hero Worship (part 7; Conclusion)

You've been wondering when he'll show up.  Finally, we get to the greatest of indignities that modern advertising has heaped upon the greatest of superheroes.

Superman.  Kal-El of Krypton/Clark Kent of Smallville.  Sole survivor of a doomed planet.  Faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a -- well, you know the rest.  Waging a never-ending battle for truth, justice and the American way...


...which technically, includes the right to wear women's clothes if you so desire.  (Does Lois know about this?)


Tomorrow:  A big announcement.  Be here.

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Monday, August 11, 2008

Advertising's Hero Worship (part 6)

Is there no end to the ways advertising can trample on the nobility of comic book heroes? Actually, there's just two more, as we'll see today and tomorrow.

Captain America, Living Legend of World War II. Previously, Steve Rogers, a scrawny Army reject beefed up through an experimental Super Soldier Serum (and frozen in suspended animation from the late '40s until our era, if you're wondering how he can still be so dang youthful today).

He's dead now -- but when he makes his inevitable resurrection, I think, given all he's been through, that we can forgive him if he goes on another bender like the one this beer ad is implying:




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Friday, August 8, 2008

Advertising's Hero Worship (part 5)

Continuing our exploration of the ways that America's comic book paragons of perfection and nobility are reimagined with all-to-human flaws in modern advertising: 

Today:  Wonder Woman, a.k.a. Princess Diana from an isle of Amazons.  Basically, a distaff Superman, she was said to be "beautiful as Aphrodite, wise as Athena, swifter than Hermes, and stronger than Hercules."

But apparently, she was also more hedonistic than Bacchus or at least careless as all get-out, as evidenced in this AIDS-prevention ad:


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Thursday, August 7, 2008

Advertising's Hero Worship (part 4)

You think comic book heroes don't always translate well into movies?  Let's continue our look at the rocky history they've had in modern advertising:

Today:  Marvel's own jolly green giant, The Incredible Hulk.  Scientist Bruce Banner, transformed by gamma radiation into, if not quite a hero, then an anti-hero.  A creature who fought less for justice than to just be left alone.   Given that, it's really only natural he'd quit the business the first chance he got...


...but of course, there's always some "puny humans" (like those of this investment firm) to hound him about that temper of his...


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Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Advertising's Hero Worship (part 3)

In which we discover that modern advertising's superhero cynicism isn't limited only to those heroes of the past.

Case in point: Elasti-Girl from 2004's "The Incredibles."  


Secret identity:  Helen Parr, part-time crimefighter, full-time wife and mother, and -- according to this ad for a foreign film festival -- occasional gumshoe:


(By the way, the headline translates to "Annoyed with Hollywood cliches?")

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Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Advertising's Hero Worship (part 2)

Continuing our look at the often irreverent, sometimes cynical treatment that today's advertising creatives gives to the superheroes of its youth:

Today, Batman -- the Dark Knight, or as he was known in simpler, more innocent times, the Caped Crusader and one-half of the Dynamic Duo.  We all know the legend by now:  Young Bruce Wayne, permanently traumatized by witnessing the murder of his parents, devotes a lifetime of training -- and a tool-belt full of gadgets -- to waging an endless war on crime.

But apparently, despite all that skill and battle-tested fighting techniques, he's still no match for a kid with a few jiu-jitsu classes, as this ad implies:


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Monday, August 4, 2008

Advertising's Hero Worship (part 1)

What is it about creative people that they love to incorporate into their ads the comic book heroes of their youth -- but rarely depict them in a respectful way?

Maybe it has something to do with the need for former fans to show that they're above hero worship now, to repudiate their childhood fascination by forcing these iconic characters into the "real world" and all that implies.  Maybe they're trying for attention by warping a cultural icon.  Or maybe they're just going for an adolescent joke.  Whatever.

Here's Spider-Man. Created in 1963 and eternally young (though he did age from a high schooler to an indeterminate 20-something over the course of 500 issues).  Still, in actual years, he'd be around 60 years-old today.

...and apparently, swinging from skyscrapers and battling super villains isn't quite enough to stave off that middleaged paunch and bad knees, as evidenced in this healthclub ad:

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Friday, August 1, 2008

5 ads that feature robots like those in movies of the last 6 years -- part 5

(You didn't think I could stretch this out for a week, did you?)

Finally, we juxtapose this crude, boxy, childish robot for a 2007 Jazz Festival...

...with this crude, boxy, childish robot from 2008:


COMING ON MONDAY:  Something new!  Something...super!  Don't miss it!

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