Friday, April 17, 2009

Is that your power plug or are you just happy to see me?

Fair warning: what follows is a discussion of sexy commercials. If you don't like the sound of that, better stop now.

I'm getting nervous about my appliances. I've seen a couple of commercials lately that have made me thinks twice about vigorously pushing my vacuums or scrubbing my stove or using the toaster.

First, there is the homo-erotic Quizno's commercial involving some poor schmuck who is being sexually exploited by a sandwich oven. "We both enjoyed that, Scott." I get the Space Odysey reference, but when the oven said, "Put it in me," I started to look askance at my toaster. Now I wonder why it gets so hot when I push its button, and am especially put off when the toast pops up when the toaster is finnished. It just doesn't seem appopriate anymore.

This morning I was treated to a stove-top talking dirty to a woman using a scrubby-wipe. I have a really nice stove-top myself. It's glass and shiny and takes a long time to cool down when I'm done with it. I really have to scrub to make sure it doesn't get stained forever or smell funny when I use it. Now, everytime I pour on the baking soda and get to work with the elbow grease, I will hear that sick, clearly lecherous, stove-top in my head, and I fear I will do a poor job.

I know sex sells. Everyone has always known that. The subtext for almost every commercial seems to be, "I will get you laid!" Toothpaste, gum, cars, alcohol (I think this is actually one of the few times where using sex to sell is truth in advertising), even tires. Seriously. I saw a sexy tire commercial. I know I have never looked at a set of tires and thought, "Whooo baby, would I like to get a hold of the guy driving on those!" I know there's a reason Mr. Clean is a buff guy in a white t-shirt. I know Victoria Secret commercials are not for girls. I just stand in awe that inuendo and double entendre have reached epoch lows and sell the weirdest things ever. What does that say about us as a culture? How are these messages subliminally affecting my children?

Why is my vacuum looking at me like that?