Sunday, March 29, 2009

I'd check those lyrics, Kyra...

The other day I happened upon a new commercial for Trop50 orange juice.  If my attention wasn't so focused on the carton -- which showed the redesigned graphics that Tropicana is abruptly dumping for its Pure Premium OJ -- I might have noticed that the woman in the commercial is Kyra Sedgwick.  Then, again, maybe I wouldn't have -- she's the last person I'd expect to be in a commercial this...generic.

For the inaugural spot for their new pitchwoman, Tropicana and its ad agency fell back on one of the most shop-worn and unconvincing advertising scenarios.  Kyra sips a glass of Trop50 and energized, she dances around her kitchen with wild abandon.

But even worse than the embarrassingly contrived excitement over a product that would NEVER come close to eliciting such a response, the spot compounds the dopiness factor with its choice of music:  Tom Jones' 1971 hit,  "She's a Lady."

As a theme for female empowerment, it's a bit...curious.  Purely by coincidence, a couple of weeks ago, I annotated the lyrics (in parentheses) for a female friend recently:
Well she's all you'd ever want,
She's the kind they'd like to flaunt and take to dinner. (SHE'S A TROPHY, SOMETHING TO DISPLAY)
Well she always knows her place. ('NUFF SAID)
She's got style, she's got grace, She's a winner.
She's a Lady. Whoa whoa whoa, she's a Lady.
Talkin' about that little lady, and the lady is mine. (AGAIN, A PRIZED POSSESSION)

Well she's never in the way (SHE'S LIKE A WELL-BEHAVED PUPPY)
Something always nice to say, Oh what a blessing. (SHE DOESN'T BOTHER ME WITH HER LITTLE PROBLEMS)
I can leave her on her own
Knowing she's okay alone, and there's no messing. (I DON'T HAVE TO BUY A CHASTITY BELT FOR HER)
She's a lady.  Whoa, whoa, whoa, she's a lady.
Talkin' about that little lady, and the lady is mine.
Of course, in the spot, all you hear is the opening chords and "She's a lady, whoa, whoa, whoa, she's a lady..."  Still, it's a little like selling a pickup truck with the lyrics "I am strong, I am invincible..." and hoping no one realizes the song is Helen Reddy's "I Am Woman."

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