As is the cultural expectation, there were lots of commercials premiered at last night’s Superbowl. None of them really blew my socks off, but one stood out to me – for the wrong reasons.
Lookin’ at you, Samsung Galaxy Note.
Go ahead and watch it, and meet me back here in 1:31.
Hey there! Let’s take is piece by piece. Okay, so there are iPhone* users standing in line (for what, you gotta wonder – the only time there’s a line like that is when a new device is launched. It’s not like Apple users just stand in lines for the heck of it). The Apple people are bored. Also, they are all hipsters, because those are the only people who use the iPhone. Suddenly, a guy comes up with a Samsung Galaxy Note, which has this new thing called a “Stylus.” Doubt ripples through the Apple faithful.
Hipster chick: I don’t know what I believe in any more
Hipster dude: I know what I believe in…
And then, this happens…
I may have to recuse myself on commenting on this part of commercial; I’ll explain. Back in the early 2000s, y’see, I liked to listen to British radio via the Web from time to time, just to get a different perspective on the world, and hear some stuff I wasn’t already sick to death of. This is where I learned that radio is pretty much the same in any Western culture, because they have their own bands in jolly ol’ England that they drive into the ground. The Darkness was one of these bands. The Darkness is a British glam rock band, fronted by a gent named Justin Hawkins (the fellow in this commercial). British radio LOVED their single “I Believe in a Thing Called Love,” (the song in this commercial). In my humble opinion, this band sucked. A lot. A couple of my friends at work whom I roped into listening to it to get their opinion agreed. The fact that it was in super-heavy rotation only added to that feeling of suckage. Therefore, I can’t be an impartial judge of this part of the commercial.
Eh, screw it. I never offered to be impartial. Ten years later, this song still sucks. Back to the commercial.
Samsung Galaxy Notes start to fall from the sky (as consumer electronics do), and everyone breaks out of line to dance, sing, rejoice and so on (I can only assume riots started sometime later). Marching bands and gospel choirs appear to back up Mr. Hawkins, a guy from MAD TV gets his picture taken with some hipsters, spontaneous x-treme skateboarding and bmx riding takes place, and human cannonballs and zip-lining are seen.
My takeaway is this:
• Hipsters can’t dance (not well, at least).
• The Darkness hasn’t gotten better with age.
• There aren’t lines at the Apple store like that very often, and people are in a better mood when there are.
• Nobody stands in line when Samsung releases a product.
• If you’re trying to get people to switch to your brand from another brand, you probably shouldn’t be condescending to them in the first part of your commercial (“Wanna see a picture of my cat?” “No.”)
• Stylus for computer tech were invented a long time ago, and there’s a reason (many, actually) that they went away.
• If you really, really want a stylus for the iPhone, you can get one here: http://www.thinkgeek.com/gadgets/b8dd/. They also have gloves and joysticks.
• Don’t lose the stylus.
• Look really close for subtitles like “Application sequences shortened. Screen images simulated. Appearance of device may vary” (at the :16 mark)
*It never comes out an says these are iPhone users, but the inference is clear. The Windows phone just doesn’t have that amount of clout.