I'm under no illusion that car ads are made to sell cars and not to promote alternative transportation, but there're a couple recent Lincoln ads that have gone a step further. The first has Dwayne Wade pulling up to an urban basketball court in his Navigator, replacing the hoops, flooding the kids with balls, and tossing the keys to the coach. He then squeaks away in the shadow of a tractor trailer on a child-sized bike. The obvious point here is Wade is making such a tremendous sacrifice that he's got no option other than to ride a shitty little bike home. Put aside the ridiculous idea that Wade doesn't have the cash to call a cab (or that it's somehow more virtuous to suffer along with those you're helping) and you're left with the notion that people who ride bikes to get anywhere do so because they can't afford a car. Or a properly-fitting and well-oiled bike, for that matter.
The second is for the MKX (couldn't find a clip). Suburban guy kisses his wife and kid, heads off to work. On the drive, he phones in for his messages, makes business small talk. He then arrives... back home (!) and it turns out his wife is his secretary and his kid is his meeting manager. Or something. This guy loves to drive his car so much that he literally goes on a morning commute to nowhere.
The bike thing, fine. Good for a cheap laugh. I don't begrudge anybody for not using a bike for transportation because we've built our roads to be deathtraps. But the commuter one is pretty much everything that's wrong with our car culture. The idea that someone who has no need to add to the gridlock and pollution and waste of the morning drive would do so just because he can is exactly the mindset that has brought us as far as we are down the road of unsustainability.
Posted by Matt Ransford on 11/27/2006 | Permalink
More good anti-corporate bullshit expressions for you here:
Posted by: Jackalope | Nov 27, 2006 3:09:32 PM
Along the same line, the car commercial I'm currently hating features a man reaching home after a long run, totally beat. Just as he arrives, his neighbor -- a 30something yuppie -- pulls up next door in a fancy car, jumps out in a mad sweat, reaches for some bottled water, and wipes himself with a towel. The yuppie then looks at the runner as if he's some poor sap and gloats, as if to say, "talk about a workout!"
Two words came to mind when I saw this: masculinity crisis.
Speaking of hating cars, I've been reading this blog a lot lately and it's pretty great: http://www.streetsblog.com
Posted by: Carrie McLaren | Nov 30, 2006 9:30:54 PM