Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Another Nitwit Commercial

Voltas has joined the ranks of corporations airing totally brainless commercials.

It has as pitchman a South Indian, identified as such by a broad accent and pidgin Hindi and English.

He tells how the installation of a Voltas air-conditioner in his home convinced his wife Meenakshi to brave the heat of Delhi and move to the capital.

It is not just that the commercial is airing when most Delhiites are shivering through a bitterly cold winter.

I wonder what the brass at Voltas hoped to achieve with the ad. Did they think that a South Indian speaking pidgin would:

  1. Move hordes of other South Indians to buy their product?
  2. Prove an irresistible pitch to a horde of North Indian customers?
  3. Leave everyone wondering what idiot(s) thought up this commercial?

It is also worth wondering what is behind the recent trend towards the use of grating regional stereotypes in commercials and “Bollywood” films.

Someone somewhere is obviously putting a lot of money into an attempt to reverse the seamless integration that has, in the last six decades, obliterated the sharp provincial sensitivities the British created while they ruled here. 

In the context of the surging communalization of politics, that should set off alarm bells in our security agencies. 

At the very least, it should draw down closer scrutiny of the finances of the ad agencies and the Bollywood actors/producers/directors involved. 

No comments: