Our delicious future

Since everyone else was using their real names, I felt like the odd man out. So from now I’m signing my posts as “Anthony” rather than “Calorie Mate.” Boring, I know, but at least I’ll not be including my last name up here; it’s both boring and too closely associated with New Games Journalism. [And cardigans. — editor]

But let’s talk about Microsoft’s new Windows Vista ad campaign. Nich, official friend of GameSpite, recently brought it to my attention, though I guess they’ve been running for awhile now. The idea behind them is to team up Jerry Seinfeld and Bill Gates and set them loose on the world to experience the mundane activities most of us do. Here’s a longer one — incidentally my favorite — for reference:

The world seems pretty divided on them; some people like them, while others hate them because they’re unfocused and don’t even say “Vista” at all. Most people fall into the middle category of entertained, but confused. I happen to be in the camp that thinks they’re absolutely brilliant.

This is what I want a commercial to be. It’s fun to watch, to the point that I enjoyed it more than most of what regular television offers these days (though admittedly, that isn’t terribly difficult to do). Everyone already knows Vista exists, so Microsoft doesn’t need to beat me over the head with it; much like Coca-Cola, they simply advertise because they need to keep brand awareness alive. As a result, I get a weird commercial that’s something I’d actively watch more of if they offered it to me. Personally, I think that shows some respect for the consumer. This is a very good thing.

Now, I don’t know how I’d feel about watching it each and every day, but the same could be said of most things, including television shows themselves. I mean, I love Venture Bros., for example, but if I watched the same clip once a day, I’d grow sick of it. Similarly, I’m sure I’d hate these ads if they were everywhere. They’re probably best restricted to a couple airings per “episode”. Whether or not that means this fails as an ad I’m not sure, but I do know that my appreciation for Microsoft is raised ever-so-slightly by this… and something tells me that’s the point.

10 thoughts on “Our delicious future

  1. Calories, we are of like minds on the Seinfeld/Gates commercials. I love them! It’s like Seinfeld has come back in small snippet form. I was unaware that there were any more than just the Shoe Circus one, so this was a pleasant surprise (also, I love the continuity between them, with Bill ‘working in’ the Conquistador in this one). Are there any others yet?

  2. No, as far as I know, there are only two so far. (I actually saw this one first, so it was funny to me to see the Conquistador thing and then have it click.)

    I’m pretty sure framing them for taking the giraffe was a shot at Safari, and that’s awesome.

  3. Hmm. I enjoyed the clip, and I suppose it does incrementally improve my opinion of Gates (though honestly he wasn’t doing bad in my book these days anyways, what with his focus on charity work recently), but it’s sure not going to make me run out and buy Vista.

    Of course, I run Macs at home, so that’s a totally lost cause for them, but even at work I’m in no rush to upgrade windows boxes from XP.

  4. They say the best stories are ordinary people doing extraordinary things or extraordinary people doing ordinary things.

  5. As someone who no longer lives in the US, I don’t encounter these ads on normal TV at all. I have only been exposed to them online, which means I’m no doubt getting longer versions than most people. While this clip was more meaningful than the shoe store one, as it actually suggested what these “commercials” are about, I’m still not sold on these. I think it’s the editing – everything’s too slow. Seinfeld works fast. These long silences and reaction shots don’t jive with his quips. And Bill Gates just isn’t much of a performer.

  6. These are a step-up from the Shoe Circus one. Entertaining, but still not sold on buying a Vista.
    Incidentally, anyone remembered the American Express ad with Jerry and Superman? I’m definitely get the same vibe from that ad when watching the Vista one.

  7. If he wanted to look comfortable, he’d spend a hundred thousand dollars getting someone to teach him how to do it, or he’d just have the editors fix it in post-production. His looking uncomfortable is half the point.

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