Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Please Start Again

I can't help it; I want her to start smoking again.

On TV in this neck of the woods is a advertising campaign for a smoking preventative. A lozenge or gum or patch or knitting needles or something.

It is presenting in the form of a video blog of a woman's successful battle against cigarette cravings. And somehow they are the most irritating they could possibly be. Of course she is happy about cigarettes not getting the best of her. And her kids are supportive. And the story about visiting her two pack a day mother with all its mental imagery is heart warming. In the most opposite sense of the phrase.

So I want her to start smoking again. So the ads will go away. So she will stop her 2am musings on the plight she is overcoming.

But K had an extra insightful insight... There is another way to stop her - and that is if everyone stops smoking. If everyone stops smoking, then there would no need for nicotine supplements, and then no need for these ads.

For a moment I wondered if this was the intent of the ad. But it isn't being run by an anti-smoking company, it is a company that makes products for smokers to help them stop. Except of course, these companies wouldn't want people to actually stop smoking, because their market would evaporate like so much smoke in the wind.

So I can only conclude that this ad is serving two simultaneous goals. To raise awareness of their product line, and also to annoy reformed smokers to the point that they take up smoking in desperation after seeing the advert, and hence need their products again.

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