Thursday, February 17, 2005

Fear and consumerism

I remember when I was a child watching the likes of Leave It To Beaver, Sky King, Sea Hunt and Father Knows Best that there were always commercials that have disappeared from the television landscape of today.

Commercials used to be shown for whiskey, cigarettes, bacon, toothpaste, shaving cream (ah, Burma Shave), Alka-Seltzer, Old Spice, among others, have been relegated to the past.

All the old game shows used to be sponsored by … a single sponsor, like Tide or Cheer detergent.

Today, they have been replaced by drug commercials and idiotic car commercials. The ones that irk me to the point of hitting the mute button, are the drug commercials. Ask your doctor if Cialis is right for you. Remember erections lasting more than 4 hours require immediate medical attention. Can't you just see some guy sporting a tremendous woody going into the ER and being met by the triage nurse? What the hell is that nurse supposed to do anyway? "Sir, let me handle that for you right away."

One thing that keeps hitting me between the eyes is a phrase that Marilyn Manson used during an interview with Michael Moore, and it is ringing true every time I see a commercial... to paraphrase Manson, "It's all about fear and consumerism." Now apply that phrase to every drug commercial you see, it even applies to EVERY commercial lately. If you don't dress a certain way, or take a certain drug, your life is pretty much a failure. Watch and see.

Give me a "Call for Philip Morris," tagline any day.