The Creative Ghetto

So Agency.com wants to be agency of record for Subway sandwiches, and they decide to make a video for Subway about their team, as a ‘viral video’ that they will upload to YouTube, etc. They make the video, and it’s really sort of sad to watch probably smart and talented people try to graft something human and quirky (stupid videos on the internet) on to the desperate anxiety of lucrative business relationships. The video is not funny and does not take any risks (it even has two people on camera saying that the video has to be funny and that it shows they take risks). Glass-house-dweller Coudal Partners takes them down easily.

But I feel bad for the Agency.com folks, and some solidarity. The fact that they made this video shows that they haven’t given up, they still have that desire and ambition to make something that anyone would want to see, even within the special confines of corporate ad hell. It’s poignant to see them get lost in their own self-consciousness and idea that their business is somehow teh funny. It makes me think of the elaborate graffiti scratched into the paint-proof subway car, the Western adventure novel written in while on unemployment assistance, the rheumy old man sending flowers to the comely young mail carrier.

From the depths of my own corporate design cubicle, I woozily tip some Wild Turkey Green Vibrance into my coffee. I raise my cup, silently. The fluorescent lights beat down. Pan left. Cut to wide shot. Fade out.

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