Bruce Lawson's personal site

More stupidly hyperbolic advertising

After my first rant about the horrors of the LG TV commercial, I thought I’d continue the theme of stupidly hyperbolic advertising by focussing on an ad I saw on lots of billboards in Indonesia. It was advertising some mobile phone that allowed you to choose from a set of luridly-coloured plastic cases depending on your mood.

Nothing wrong with that. I remember when I was a teenager that there was a watch that had lots of different faces and straps that you could choose one, and it seemed quite fun. If this ad had been headlined “What’s your favourite colour?” or “What’s your mood today?” I wouldn’t object at all.

I think that, given the target consumer for livid-coloured mobile phones is likely to be teenagers, you should use good old fashioned sex to market the phone. (I’ve copyrighted this, so bugger off, ad people.) Using a blue case? It means “I’m up for flirting or snogging but nothing more”. A pink case means “looking for a one-night stand”. A yellow case indicates “I’m looking for romance and commitment”. Basically, a sort of teenie romance version of the gay handkerchief code.

But they don’t. They have the fuckwitted hyperbolic strapline “What colour is your life?”. Instead of asking me what my favourite colour is, what kind of mood I’m in or what level of clinginess I aspire to from a partner tonight, they want me to equate my life experience, ambitions, hopes, dreams, disappointments, aspirations, loves and regrets to a dayglo piece of plastic.

I thought about the day I got married, the birth of my children and decided that my life is green. Then, I thought of the day I was diagnosed with MS, was rejected by the first ever girl I asked out and I realised that my life is blue. But then, when I considered passing my driving test, getting my degree I felt my life was pink.

What colour is your life?

It’s very hard to define your life as a colour, but I believe I have come up with a method which I call Voight-Kampff Chromatography.

Fill in the form below to learn your life colour, while keeping your face within sight of your computer’s webcam. (If you have no webcam, you can take the test but the results will be 7.3% less accurate.)

Whatever the Voight-Kampff Chromatograph decides your life colour is, it’s easy to guess that of the advertising “creatives” and PR tossers who came up with this campaign. The colour of their lives is brown. Like shit.

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2 Responses to “ More stupidly hyperbolic advertising ”

Comment by JackP


The only one minor quibble is that I answered the test twice, and it seems undecided as to whether this results in me being pink or blue.

Should I purchase both types of mobile phone case, or is there a definitive test for VKC which will settle the colour situation?

Comment by bruce

Jack, it’s simple. The VKC is like the Heisenberg uncertainty principle. The act of learning that your life was one colour was enough to make it another colour!

Just thank your lucky stars that it could determine a colour at all. It’s terrible when it can’t ….

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