Old Navy Aerobix Victims.
Comprising a long-running series, these advertisements depict consumers of the advertised clothing brand as lifeless mannequins — or maybe ventriloquist dummies. Decorated with brand-name images of historical pop stars, this particular ad culturefucks an intergenerational youth-cult theme by subversively depicting the heroes of the rockstar mannequins as mannequins also. Different figures exhibit various classic iconographic hand gestures throughout (such as members of a crowd holding Bic lighters in the air at a rock show).
Machine and Inventornator.
Progress means that we exist to invent. Also, new inventions are better, and as long as the future brings us new inventions the future means everything is better. We are unique among the animals because we can plan for the future, and we are best off planning for the best possible future. In the future, our planning will bring us technology that does much of what we do better than we can do it ourselves. “Microsoft gives me the family nature never could.”
Google Will Make You a Robot in 13 Easy Steps.
During a boardroom meeting, a young, hip, executive meatbag’s telephone transforms him into a machine. Given the genealogy (or demonology) of the public relations industry and the freudian characteristics of technological prosthetics, the emphasis on this particular Brand of efficiency facilitated by connectivity is perhaps not incidental to the iconology of the advertisement. Agents swarm the cloud. “Whose brain are yours today?” Google have been secretly working on an automobile that drives itself through traffic. Progress is when the car decides where to drive.
An ad for a psychiatric medication that depicts the patient as a mechanical wind-up doll.
This same visual metaphor has appeared in other ads for the same pill. The first third of the spot is about the symptoms this psychotropic drug is meant to treat. The second two-thirds are about how this advanced pill can make you into a robot even if science doesn’t really know how, and what side-effects you might expect from ingesting this substance regularly. The visual subtext says: you will feel better when you stop being a robot and start treating life like the Game modern sociologists say it is. Ask your HMO for a list of licensed drug dealers in your family-friendly neighborhood.