August 24, 2005 by Colin
The Conservative Party of Canada has released a new set of television ads – on their website. They feature sitting Members of Parliament engaged in stunningly wooden debate about issues of importance to Canadians – like immigration, health care and taxes.
The pretense is that they’re in some sort of party war room, spouting pithy truths about the challenges facing Canadians. The films are neither grainy nor bouncy enough to seem like true “gonzo” documentaries. All the male politicians are wearing clean and pressed shirts, all the female politicians are wearing nice conservative two piece suits. They’re backlit, and clearly wearing too much makeup.
Is their early release on the party website supposed to fuel a viral campaign? The pieces only seem to feed into the building perception among Canadians (or the Parliamentary Press Gallery, at least) that the Conservatives (and their leader) just can’t seem to connect with ordinary Canadians.
In fact, the ads immediately made me think of the brilliant send-up of television advertising Truth in Advertising. In particular, a quote from the TV ad director who tells the agency reps that:
“Sure, I’ll agree to that change, as long as you allow me the illusion of control, instead of the hack/failed filmmaker that I am.”