I hate to be dramatic, but -- we've hit the bottom, folks. As a nation, we've scratched the bottom of the barrel of advertising, broken through to the dirt underneath, clawed through layers of clay and bedrock, and kept digging until we hit the molten core. And now here we are -- writhing and screeching in the darkest, most heinous circle of marketing hell. And do you want to know what it looks like? Behold this AMP energy drink commercial:
(This is the full, uncut version. The :30 spot basically takes the most egregious parts of this one and condenses them.)
That's right. It's a paean to the one-night stand. A celebration of casual sex -- and not the sex itself, mind you, but the hungover part afterward that nobody likes.
When you wake up in the morning in an unfamiliar place. / And you can't remember where or when, let alone her face.
So here's the deal -- I'm not going to moralize here. Some people have no problem with casual sex, while others are pretty adamant about saving physical intimacy for a serious/safe relationship (or even marriage.) Two sides to the issue. Fine. But do we need to be so cavalier in our presentation of casual sex? Do we need to show half-naked people in beds talking about not remembering who they fucked the night before on national television? I mean, last time I checked this was America, and we tend to get pretty easily offended by crap that makes it onto TV -- and isn't this pretty goddam objectionable based on our track record?
You cannot find your shoe and your hair smells like a bar
God, that sounds horrible. That would suck, losing a shoe. And who enjoys smelling like a bar? Hey, weren't we trying to sell a drink here? Is this making people thirsty?
Side note: a lot of these actors are pretty f'ugly. And they can't sing worth shit. In my book, that makes this ad not "funny 'cause it's true" but, rather, "hard to watch."
But you kinda feel excited 'cause you got really far
Searching for a rhyme here, eh? Anyway, this guy's going back to his frat house, and, according to this song, the conversation is going to go something like this:
Roommate: Dude, where were you last night?
Shirtless Guy: Heh, long night. Got really far with this chick.
Roommate: Whoa, nice work. Was she hot?
Shirtless Guy: No idea, can't remember.
Roommate: Hmm, what's that smell?
Shirtless Guy: Oh, that's stale bar smoke. Probably got in my hair.
Roommate: Where's your shoe?
Shirtless Guy: Couldn't find it.
Roommate: Sounds like you had a fucking rockin' night, man! High five!
Shirtless Guy: (passes out)
Last night I was sure that I was with a "10" / Then this morning when I saw those cankles, I had to think again / Oh, I will not be ashamed
Man, you have to be shitnammered to think you're sleeping with some hot girl when, in fact, she has cankles. I don't care how many AMPs you slug, you are on a walk of shame. Additional shame points to AMP for trying to be hip by using the word "cankles."
Oh, how I'll push through the day / In my tiny ruffled miniskirt / and some guy's extra large t-shirt
You could change, you know, at some point in the day. You could, like, go home and change out of your slut suit if it's bothering you. Oh, that's right - this is the walk of no shame. You'll wear obviously-slept-in clothes around and be proud of it! Well, I'm convinced.
Also -- I like how, apparently, the entire world is doing a walk of shame. Every single person, save the AMP street vendor, has just had a one-night stand. And not a one of them experiences any remorse, dammit!
Oh, we will not be ashamed
I'm feeling like a greasy mess (holds up AMP can)
Excellent time to show the product here, after "greasy mess."
I try to learn my lesson time and time again / Tomorrow when the clock strikes two, I'm back in love again
Uh-huh. "Love," you say? That is, of course, what this commercial is about. That nasty, sickened feeling you have when you wake up after a night of falling in love.
So, to sum up the message of this commercial: "Do you fuck anything that moves? Awesome. That's a good, healthy thing. You sound like an AMP drinker. Hey, isn't it hilarious when you can't remember what the girl/guy looks like that you drunkenly boned? Hah, that's the best. It'd be even funnier if you contracted an STD or something or got pregnant. But, do you know what helps with that? AMP. Takes the worries and guilt away. Drink it, and keep on sleeping around!"
We learn nothing about the actual AMP product in this commercial, by the way. Or how it somehow helps your feeling of shame go away after faceless intercourse. Basically all we learn is that the lifestyle of the AMP drinker is that of unchecked, dionysian lust.
And then there's this Facebook app that encourages you to write in with your own "walk of no shame story." Okay, if you think this commercial is actually funny, then I encourage you to do this. Please submit your stories. It will be so funny when employers are searching for you on Facebook and see this story -- I'll be right here watching you not get jobs. Or when your future girl/boyfriends are checking you out and see your stories. That will be some excellent schadenfreude. So if you really find this campaign "hilarious" or "lol" or "lololololol" or " i LOVE this. LOVE LOVE LOVE! HAHA ok" (actual YouTube comment), then spare me the comments on this post and just go directly to Facebook and share your story. Share that with the world, folks! What could possibly go wrong?
So, where do we go from here.... What will companies endorse next? Coke parties? Binge and purge weight control? The five finger discount? Murder?!?!? Oh, I can barely wait to see what they'll come up with next!