Thursday, January 22, 2009

We'll Choke On Our Vomit, And That Will Be The End

Time for me to bitch about more just plain awful ads on TV and radio.

Comcast has been pimping its digital cable and high-speed internet lately. During football season they had an ad about how one guy was way better at fantasy football than another because of his internet. The loser whines, "You always know how to crush my hopelessly pathetic defense." OK. I don't play fantasy football. I have my own nerdery to partake in. But even I know that who someone plays has nothing to do with your teams defense, because your defense just goes against the real-life team. Also, generally you play different people each week. Then the winner replies, "Because I use Comcast. And I am your lord and master!" Here's where the writing sucks. If you're trash talking someone, you go with the lord and master taunt before revealing your secret. As a commercial, it would better segue into the sales pitch by having the Comcast line last. Fail on two counts.

The current commercial for Comcast cable involves a 30-something woman who looks like an older Hillary Duff talking about her misspent youth using satallite TV. "We all go through that phase," she says smugly. "Then I realized that I could lose my picture in bad weather." Now, I actually find this a legitimate point. However, the wording suggests she never actually lost her picture. If I had satallite for 5 years and never lost the picture, I wouldn't be spending $50 more a month for cable on the off chance that it might still happen. Then she continues, "Of course, when you have kids, everything changes." Damn straight. Once you have kids TV is your only escape from the soul-crushing reality that your life no longer belongs to you. If the picture goes out, you're liable to go sit in the garage with the car running.

I wouldn't get upset about this type of ad if I didn't know there were talented writers out there who could craft ads worth watching. On a side note, anyone can pay me $50 to listen to an ad and tell you why it sucks, and how to fix it.

Now, I turn to AM1280 The Patriot for an ad I only hear on that station. The first involves Ty Coughlin, a so-called "beach bum" from Hawaii who has created a system to make millions of dollars on the internet without actually doing anything. First off, this seems antithetical to the conservative work ethic. Getting money for doing nothing is exactly what all of those talk-show hosts are against. But even worse is the commercial itself. It starts out with Ty laughing and asking if the commercial is live. He's told it is. He then starts with, "OK, I guess we're live ..." Someone really should have stopped the commercial at that point to say, A. It's a taped commercial, not live and B. We don't need to mention the process of taping. Of course, I suppose that fits into Ty's easy-going image. But then, there's the follow-up commercial, which putitively features one of Ty's many minions who have used the program, but sounds suspiciously like Ty Coughlin just lowering his voice in a clever attempt to disguise it. This commercial includes an English problem that's been spreading recently.

"Actually" is a word that should be used to purport something as true that has been called false. More and more, people throw "actually" in to modify their sentence for something no one thought was wrong to begin with. I heard a news guy say he was "actually" going to be somewhere the next day. No one had suggested he wouldn't be there. Here's a hypothetical where actually is used correctly:
Me: "Nickleback is just a plain awful band."
Some Idiot: "Actually, Nickleback puts out some wonderful music."
Me: *Shakes head sadly*
See, Some Idiot was trying to refute my statement that, in fact, all music would be better if Nickleback never played another note.

So, anyway, at one point the "Not Ty Coughlin" guy says, "I've met Ty, and he's actually a pretty cool dude." At which point I think to myself, "I hadn't thought for one minute he wasn't a cool dude, but your defensive wording has me a little wary now." So then I thought maybe there's a whole group that is opposed to Ty and his money making schemes. So I googled anti-Ty Coughlin. There are a couple of sites attacking him, but not really a concerted effort. Then I thought maybe they have a clever name, like Productive Citizens Against Beach Bums. No dice. Then I got bored.

Then it hit me; Ty Coughlin and his henchmen are using their internet ability to shut down any organized effort against him on the web. And they're using their vast internet fortunes to buy up any open radio commercial slots to keep dissenting folks from getting any air time to air their grievences against him. This is because he is running a scam.

And that's why I support the fairness doctrine.

(Not really)

Your Now I Can Sleep At Night leader.

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