In our dull Volvo world even ads come with safety features
Whatever you do, don’t watch the above ad before you drive home. You might turn into a maniac and start aiming at bus queues. Happily, the car advertisements of the not too distant future will feature a middle-aged dad in a beige cardigan and a mum in a twin set, and a couple of kiddies lashed into ergonomic capsules and wearing crash helmets for added protection.
They will be putt-putting along in the non-fast lane at 47kmh as the ad extols the car’s safety features and ability to get you from A to B. There will be no mention of how much fun the car is to drive, how it handles corners, how quickly it can go from nought to 100, how it’s got racy bucket seats, beautiful zippy lines, a cracker of a stereo or a monstrous donk under the bonnet.
The advertisements will not contain any pulse-quickening music, certainly nothing like that catchy Free Radicals song which went to number one courtesy of the Mitsubishi ad where reckless young people were seen having fun in a car.
But don’t hold your breath on the chances of their acquiescing, as even Enya would probably be deemed to be too arousing in light of the ban on the brilliantly innovative commercial for the new BMW Z4.
This red-hot sports car has its tyres covered with different coloured paint, and in the safety of a warehouse, zips back and forth across a canvas (below) to create the motoring equivalent of Jackson Pollock’s Blue Poles.
The advertisement was the latest in a series where the German car maker has commissioned some of the world’s leading artists to paint its cars.
Instead of being recognised as a celebration of human engineering, artistic innovation, quality filmmaking and powerful marketing, the ad has been deemed by the miserable souls at the ASB as a clarion call for ratbags, which would encourage car hoons to spin and burn their tyres.
The board noted that the advertisement does depict, in several places, the driver intentionally allowing the wheels of the car to lose traction and perform “. . . a four-wheel drift”, the bureau’s judgment said.
BMW mounted the rational defence the audience can distinguish between fantasy and reality but, no doubt fearful that youngsters are going to be getting Z4s and taking them into giant warehouse spaces to make art installations, the ASB censored it from our screens.
They’re a strange outfit, this lot.
A few months ago I noted their silence on a stack of other ads that drive parents completely around the twist, none more so than the Advanced Medical Institute and its infernal spruiking for that sheet-shredding, toe-curling orgasm she’s been looking for.
The ASB has received hundreds and hundreds of complaints about these ads from parents who are sick and tired of being ambushed while watching TV, listening to radio or driving past billboards and being asked by their kids to explain Longer-Lasting Sex.
As the ASB continues its cat-and-mouse game with the peddlers of erectile nasal spray, it comes down like a ton of bricks on a reputable organisation that makes top quality, incredibly safe cars and devises advertisements that should not be censored but given awards. Our roads are no safer for their censoriousness.
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