Sunday, July 30, 2006

Lazy Copywriter Syndrome

After a busy weekend of chores I slumped down this evening to see if there was anything on the TV worth watching. There wasn't of course, but I did get to see the two commercials that have been bugging me the most recently back-to-back. Such sequential annoyance was enough to make me turn of the goggle-box and stomp upstairs to the office where I currently sit typing this nonsense.

Let's tackle the first offender:

As you would expect from a commercial for Special K, this one features a idiotically slim model flouncing up to her frumpy pals at an outdoor cafe (as opposed to an Applebees in a mall, say) and bragging about how she essentially crapped herself to a size 0 by forcing down the cardboard-like cereal. My beef is less with the ludicrous set-up however than with the inane voice over. It must have seemed fine on paper to pitch like Special K (pause) weigh less, but that sentence is an object lesson as to why ad execs should read things out loud before signing off on them, especially if the read is going to be delivered in a sassy Valley Girl type voice. Then again, perhaps this is an example of truth in advertising and the words than Total were just cut due to time constraints.

OK, next:
This copywriter had the opposite problem. The voice over makes plain that this topical arthritis medicine is pronounced Cap-ZAY-sin. Unfortunately, showing a senior citizen merrily paddling a canoe in a sort of "On Golden Pond" meets "Cocoon" senario while superimposing the product packaging at lower right means you'll have to do a lot more than repeat the name once or twice to break the synaptic connection that imprints the name as Capsizin'. Am I going to splash the cash on a pain rub that wantonly put granny's life at risk? It's almost as ill-conceived a homophone as the French lemonade Pschitt (which apparently is perfect for "pschitter en pschitting"). Oh, how that used to crack teenaged me up while on French exchange.

No comments: