The most egregious affront to a viewer’s intelligence in a TV commercial is the phrase:
A, Don’t try this at home
B, Closed course, professional driver, do not attempt
C, Ask your doctor
The answer is, of course, ‘Ask your doctor.’ They’ve got nothing better to do than sit on the phone with you to explain why there are more reasons for you not to take the pharmaceutical product you just saw on TV because one of the side effects is death.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regulates "truth in advertising." But the truth is that (They think) we’re getting dumber all the time. We’ve also become the most litigious society on Earth. That’s why commercials carry disclaimers.
In the new Nissan Rogue TV Commercial we’re advised “Professional driver closed-course. Do not attempt” (OK, we’ve seen that before)
The commercial opens and we see our ‘commuters’ are going to be late. Driver steps on the gas and beats rush hour by driving up a ramp and landing on a train. (At this point anyone with half a brain thinks (I don’t think that can happen) or (Wow! I’d like to try that maneuver).
“Fantasy, do not attempt,” it warns repeatedly.
“Fantasy, do not attempt. Cars can’t jump on trains.”
The car drives off the train and is followed by yet another warning. “Still professional on closed-course. Do not attempt.” (They want you to know they are still not kidding about the professional driver and the fact that’s it’s a commercial)
They keep reminding us that it isn’t real, but what really isn’t real is the notion that some jerks will think that it is. That’s how lawyers make money.
BTW, There’s a light at the end of the spate of that particular commercial being shown ‘ad nauseum’ It was shown so many times Twitterers complained all over the place. Nissan USA began Tweeting a similar message in response:
“Thx. We hear you. May have been a little TOO excited about the Rogue. Working w/ networks to show less this wknd. Our bad!”
Don’There’s hope for us yet!