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Feb. 15th, 2005

After reading this Onion interview with Seth McFarlane, I think he's a choad. Which is a shame becuase I actually liked him. The interviewer asking again and again about The Simpsons is one thing and not his fault. However, insisting that your show is very different and then referencing the Simpsons in half your answers thereafter isn't really building your case for you. No wonder the Simpsons people hate you. He also managed to call Michael Crichton "brilliant." So he's obviously moronic.

Apparently my "caring about TV" gene is broken. I saw a commercial the other day for some media/cable/tv... something. HDTV? I don't remember. Anyway, the commercial followed this guy from birth through grandparenthood. Apparently all of the major events in his life were definable by moments on TV. He's a child watching Ed Sullivan. He's a teen watching the moon landing. He's in an army uniform watching footage of Vietnam, etc. etc. Until he is old and wizened and introducing his grandchildren to the joys of television. The voiceover talks about how television is the best reflection of ourselves and how it's been there our whole lives as this incredibly important medium and how we *cherish* television. Then goes on to say how their company is going to continue that proud tradition by bringing quality TV products. Between that and the JC Penney valentine's day commercial I caught the other day I am so disgusted with the media this week.
I had been in the kitchen baking cookies (becuase that's my place) I'd had the TV on but that was only becuase I was watching the end of Are You Being Served while the replay was recording it. I heard this AWFUL remake of 99 Luftballons playing so popped my head around the corner to see what the hell would be using *that* song and it was a commercial for JC Penny's Valentine's day sale. Now, all they were using of the song was the "99 red balloons go by" part... but STILL.
That would be like using that 'she's a brick' song from Ben Folds Five in a Gerber products commercial.

The fact that I have even managed to see two commercials in the past month is pretty amazing in and of itself given how little TV I watch. But honestly, the fact that I found both of them to be SO incredibly offensive and lame isn't all that shocking. How the FUCK do you people watch TV?




You and I in a little toy shop
Buy a bag of balloons with the money we've got
Set them free at the break of dawn
'till one by one they were gone
Back at base, sparks in the software
Flash the message "something's out there"
Floating in the summer sky
Ninety nine red balloons go by

Ninety nine red balloons
Floating in the summer sky
Panic bells, it's red alert
There's something here from somewhere else
The war machine springs to life
Opens up one eager eye
And focusing it on the sky
The ninety nine red balloons go by

Ninety nine decisions treat
Ninety nine ministers meet
To worry, worry, super scurry
Call the troops out in a hurry
This is what we've waited for
This is it boys, this is war
The President is on the line
As Ninety nine red balloons go by

Ninety nine knights of the air
Ride super high-tech jet fighters
Everyone's a super hero
Everyone's a Captain Kirk
With orders to identify
To clarify and classify
Scramble in the summer sky
Ninety nine red balloons go by

As ninety nine red balloons go by

Ninety nine dreams I have had
In every one a red balloon
It's all over and I'm standing pretty
In this dust that was a city
If i could find a souvenir
Just to prove the world was here
And here is a red balloon
I think of you and let it go

Comments

( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
umbrella
Feb. 15th, 2005 04:38 pm (UTC)
TV is horrible. At least over here we only get adverts about every 10-15 minutes. Opening credits ADVERTS show ADVERTS show ADVERTS show ADVERTS end credits ADVERTS all in 30 minutes is a bit much.

Not that I watch TV much since every thing I would want to watch is posted on the net shortly afterwards anyway.
diffrentcolours
Feb. 15th, 2005 05:15 pm (UTC)
I find the adverts on UK commercial TV tolerable, but most of the stuff I watch is on BBC channels which are advert-free. I have been pondering building a Freevo or MythTV box and cutting the adverts out, it's quicker than waiting for my precious episodes of The Bill to appear on the Intarweb.
akadashi
Feb. 15th, 2005 07:28 pm (UTC)
1. You forgot to mention your point from the other day, namely that they're using a song about ACCIDENTAL NUCLEAR DEVASTATION to promote some trite Valentine's Day crap they're selling. TEH CLEVAR!

2. Use of "becuase that's my place" caught me off guard and I literally had to grab onto the desk and violently shake for a few minutes to avoid cackling at the top of my lungs here at work. Thank god a beverage wasn't involved.
maddening
Feb. 15th, 2005 07:51 pm (UTC)
well I kind of said that with the ben folds reference. That "brick" song is all about how, as a teenager, he took his girlfriend to get an abortion and they tried to hide it, but she ended up telling her family and it was a huge deal. And the chorus is "she's a brick and I'm drowning slowly."

Pretty fucking putrid song to begin with... but using 99 red balloons to sell LOVE STUFF is about as sick as a song about abortion being used to sell baby products.

to your second point...NO SHOES ON THESE FEET!
mjfgates
Feb. 16th, 2005 01:20 am (UTC)
/me remembers "Get that, will you?" from Monty Python's Meaning of Liff

frobisher
Feb. 16th, 2005 06:41 am (UTC)
Pedant time:

That's "Meaning of Life". "Meaning of Liff" was Douglas Adams.
mjfgates
Feb. 16th, 2005 07:19 am (UTC)
You sure? I seem to recall a chunk falling off of the "E" during the opening credits.
maddening
Feb. 16th, 2005 02:34 pm (UTC)
The B from "brian" falls off and knocks the baby off the cloud below it. Then pretty much the rest of the titles are huge names falling from the sky and stacking up or the figure falling down through banners with the names ala down the rabbit hole.

Gilliam liked the whole falling letter thing.
maddening
Feb. 16th, 2005 03:40 pm (UTC)
Uh... I meant.. the "B" from Brian in Life of Brian. I don't think anything falls off the of "The Meaning of Life"
akadashi
Feb. 16th, 2005 03:34 pm (UTC)
Beat me to it you bastard.
frobisher
Feb. 16th, 2005 07:45 pm (UTC)
Well, it is, after all, my job.
frobisher
Feb. 15th, 2005 10:34 pm (UTC)
Speaking of inappropriate music for advertising, I'm still recovering from Devo's Beautiful World being used as a Target commercial, and I see a commercial for CAT FOOD using Traffic's Feelin' Alright.

Boggle.

It is indeed the apocalypse.
maddening
Feb. 16th, 2005 02:18 pm (UTC)
did you know that the horrible Perfect Circle remake of Imagine uses the same director as the Beauiful World video director? The reason it's so incredibly... the same... is becuase they ASKED HIM for the exact same thing, just updated with newer imagery. But they felt the need to mention in a screen crawl in the video that Devo put out this video that contained all public domain imagery and they stood by it and no one sued. sooooo... what was the point of including that tidbit? Why not mention Negativland vs. U2?

Anyway, there is also this Ani DiFranco song that in 1998 was liscensed for use in NFL promotions. At the time the manager of her (self created) record label was still trying to figure out how to actually make money out of all of this and he admits he screwed up. The probably is, the NFL *still* Uses <1>32 Flavors in their ads here and there. (Pretty bizarre if you've ever heard the song).

I guess the companies seeking music for these things hear the chorus they want and just ignore the rest. And honestly, the target audience (18 - 35) probably did about the same when they listened to the song in the first place.

MAN I'm babbly this morning. Sorry about that.
frobisher
Feb. 16th, 2005 07:44 pm (UTC)
Frankly, I'd rather hear you babble than hear a lot of people talk at all, so no problem.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )

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