Original Sin

closePlease note: This post was published over a year ago, so please be aware that its content may not be quite so accurate anymore. Also, the format of the site has changed since it was published, so please excuse any formatting issues.

If you watch TV (something that men 18-34 are doing less), you’ve probably seen the spots for the new McDonald’s Chicken Selects. They feature people in various situations (at work, at home, et cetera) telling non-existent people to “back away from the chicken”. What message is this sending? As my girlfriend pointed out, the message boils down to, “if you eat McDonald’s Chicken Selects, you will go insane.” The questionable sanity of the characters aside, the commercials aren’t particularly well thought out. One of them features a man making photocopies in his office. Near the beginning of the ad, he puts the box of Chicken Selects right on the glass of the copier. To a filmmaker, the natural assumption is that this will come into play (the message being, “these Chicken Selects are so tasty you’ll forget about everything else (which is not always a bad thing).”). Instead, he just talks to people who aren’t there.

Another spot shows a woman sitting in her living room and, again, talking to people who aren’t there. The problem with this scene is that her style of dress (a sort of preppy-hippy) doesn’t fit her surroundings (rather posh).

A third spot features a man (perhaps the same guy from the first spot; I can’t tell because I haven’t seen the first spot in a week or two) pretending he’s a rock-star at a concert talking to the audience and his band mates. At one point he says, “I want to play one last number for you. It’s called, “My Girlfriend Jenny Left Me Because I Wouldn’t Give Her Any of My Chicken Selects and Now She’s Real Mad But I’m Real Happy ‘Cuz I’ve Still Got ‘Em.”” (or something akin to that. It may not be an =exact= quote). What’s message are they trying to send?

Have you noticed that every McDonald’s campaign lately has sucked? Males 18-34, people! I like the new Jack in the Box spot with the “Grown Man’s Meal”. Clearly they’re making fun of McDonald’s Go Active meal, which even McDonald’s calls a happy meal for adults.

Despite their crappy marketing campaigns, I still eat there. In fact, I had McDonald’s for lunch today. A couple of weeks ago I gave the Chicken Selects a chance, but was rather disappointed with them. I’ll just stick to the McNuggets if I want pieces of chicken (what can I say? I guess I’m a kid at heart).

Speaking of fast food restaurants, Morah and I were having dinner at Subway last week and I realised something. Subway recently switched from handing out stamps to using a credit card-esque system for their “club”. Under the old plan, you earned a stamp for every 6-inch sandwich you ordered (yes, foot longs earned you two stamps). The stamps could be redeemed for a free 6-inch sandwich after collecting eight stamps or a free foot long after collecting sixteen stamps. A 6-inch sub costs about $4 (with tax and all. I’m rounding up, here) and foot longs are priced at about twice that, so sixteen stamps cost you about $70. Pricy, but at least you were saving about 10%.

Under the new system, you collect “points” instead of stamps. Every dollar spent is a point earned and it takes 190 points get a free foot long. In addition, the card collects information about your eating habits (including at which stores you eat). So now we’re paying over twice as much as we used to (and saving only about 4 to 5 percent) =and= Subway is getting free demographic information from us.

I feel like I should wrap things up on a happy note. Eddie Izzard fans will appreciate this t-shirt, which you can purchase here.

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  1. “I poke badgers with spoons”? Well, that’s pretty original.

  2. Kris Boustedt

    So, Lindy and I were just talking about McDonald’s ads the other night. Yes, they blow.

    Just recently, I saw AM-PM’s new ad…the one where the guy is walking out of the store, arms filled with junk food, talking about how he always betrays his will-power in an AMPM, but it’s all good because he gets to eat breakfast burritos for dinner and double cheesburgers for breakfast.

    Now *that* is what the McDonald’s ads should be. “McDonald’s. For all your fatty food goodness!”

    C’mon, they’re not kidding anyone. You go to McDonalds to clog your arteries with french fry grease. End of story.

    Psh, even the Chicken Selects have 30g of fat, and their “healthy” salads have fried meat and fatty-delicious dressing.

    Seriously, people.

    Just admit that you’re the restaraunt to go to when you want grease, and you’ll make a lot of money and make people like me (with way too much free time, apoerently) happy.


  3. 32 grams of fat, actually. -)

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