Advertising

I’ve just seen an amazing thing on television that utterly bored and infuriated me. Conradictory? No – impotence nostrum.

The infuriating part is how  unexceptional it is. The ad I watched was for Enzyte, a nostrum supposed to provide a carefully ill-defined ‘male enhancement’ to its users.

The boring? Well, suffice to say that they’re still running a Christmas themed ad in the middle of March, and it wasn’t strikingly original in the first place.

The amazing? An ad aimed at sexually frustrated guys has copy including the phrase “the one thing all the ladies love: the gift that keeps on giving.”

How in the hell do you get into the business of selling sexual aids without knowing that the phrase “the gift that keeps on giving” is common cant for a sexually transmitted disease?

Of course, impotence ads are aimed at a particularly vulnerable set of people in the first place, so maybe these guys don’t feel the need to lay out the heavy intellectual ammo.

Another ‘herbal’ (i.e. untested) potion is MaxoDerm, featuring an actor guy proudly proclaiming, “SHE actually bought it for ME!” as if that were a good thing. If a girlfriend of mine were to pharmaceutically suggest that my hardons were inadequate I would listen, but I wouldn’t advertise the fact she’d made the suggestion.

Even the legitimates are curiously clueless in this regard. Cialis seem to think that with the entire ocean spread out in front of them, the sexiest thing a couple could do is soak in two entirely separate claw-footed iron bathtubs. One bathtub, maybe, but two?

Viagra ain’t much better, as they keep showing these ads suggesting men can become sexually fulfilled through their drug, without a single female in sight. Actually, I suppose that’s not so bad, depending on their audience…

Then there’s the diet nostrums, typified by the one (too tired to track it down) that promises every pound you lose is “78% pure body fat” – I have to wonder whether the implication is supposed to be that the remainder is impure body fat, or that it’s bone and muscle mass.

Is it any wonder we believe politicians’s promises?

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~ by B.T. Murtagh on March 21, 2009.

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