Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Dead Celebrities Sell Out *snort*

Today I'd like to delve into the use of celebrities in commercials where the celebrities in question have long since rung down the curtain and joined the choir invisible.

The sight of Fred Astaire's talents being used to sell vacuum cleaners nauseated more than a few when Dirt Devil's ad campaign first appeared in 1997. There is certainly something reprehensible about cheaping what a famous person does, in the hopes that it will make someone want to spend money. Jack Kerouac wore khakis; shouldn't I?

But here's the dirty little secret - these ads are fun. Get past the salesmanship and what are you left with? A minute in the company of an old friend, in the prime of life, doing things s/he never got the opportunity to do. They're part of our world again, and it's good to have them back.

When someone means a lot to you, getting to see them one more time is always going to push your pleasure buttons. Since a two hour film is out of the question, we're glad to settle for sixty seconds - and the only films that long take place between part 1 and 2 of the show of your choice.

So let's let Audrey Hepburn dance to a song twenty-three years before Angus Young wrote it. She may not be where she expected to be, but she's with us, she's making us happy to see her again, and I think that should be enough.


Zachary said...

ARGH! That Gene Kelly is one of my favorite commercials, ever. But YouTube is so slow and choppy on my machine it's like FINGERNAILS ON A BLACKBAORD! "Board," even.

Patrick said...

It is pretty cool, isn't it? The actual dancer, on the off chance you didn't know, is David Elsewhere, and this is the clip that got him noticed:

I'm sorry YouTube runs roughshod for you, Zach, but I'm really glad you keep tuning in all the same...

jamie said...

Saw it for the first time the other day on TV: two great tastes that taste great together, dat's what I say.