I have young kids. They turn the TV on first thing in the morning and only my wife gets turned off by me later than them in the evening.
Now, my kids don’t actually vegetate in front of the TV, they much prefer to destroy the foundation of the apartment and override my wife’s iPad screenlock. But! Whilst the TV is on, I’m either forced to watch or listen to the advertisements that vie for my kids’ attention during the time that the “boobless-tube” is on.
As an aside, there was a website many moons ago visited by many foreigners with a bent sense of humor. We used to have our “favorite” CCTV 9 commercials to shred.
Now, I put forward four commercials that make me wish that there was no handgun restrictions in China:
- PEPSI. WTF??? A Pepsi employee (why else the Pepsi hat?) gets a drink from a machine that first tries to turn into a Transformer but then decided to turn into a KTV instead. Several KTV “ladies” appear, begin to do the Chinese ‘non-choreographed spastic-dance’, the main xioajie kisses the can (a burp comes from somewhere in all this) and…? And what the hell did I just see? What is Pepsi trying to tell me, that their product now contains E? KTVs and their employees love Pepsi?
- UBBIE. WTF2???? A plastic toy with a built-in recorder/player becomes a parent substitute that tells you when to brush your teeth, go to bed, kill your parents? Why is the bear always inanimate when the mother (no fathers exist in these commercials other than sitting on the couch watching Pepsi commercials) but ‘alive’ in the presence of the children alone? Chucky, anyone? One is led to believe that this hollow hunk of plastic with said recorder/player can teach children. Oh, come on! Everyone knows that only a white inanimate foreigner can do that!
- Kids milk commercials. Okay, your kid drinks milk powder (at five years old by the looks of things) and becomes either an art or music prodigy. Who believes this crap? The parents who send their kids to a kindergarten that forces kids to learn 100 Chinese characters per day? Kids who get no time to physically run and play during the day? Kids in a Chinese system whose creativity and personal expression are crushed in an effort to make them conform? All I get from these commercials is that the kids will outgrow their pants in a single milk-drinking session.
- The 900-year-old teacher with the ‘miracle’ teaching method (infomercial). Surprisingly, this even runs at 3 a.m. in the morning! Gramps has apparently hit on a miracle way of teaching children English (although, as usual, no actual English is spoken throughout the commercial)…hours upon hours of watching videos interspersed with a phone call that involves him tapping his pointer on a blackboard. The ‘phone call’ uses a ring from a phone from the 50s, not to mention…a blackboard? I’m glad to see that it only took 5000 years for someone to unlock the secret of teaching using outmoded technology. But, it does have endorsements from ‘real’ mothers, “After making my kid watch 1000 hours of the videos while I was busy playing mahjong, junior finally achieved a 1000% mark on his test. The 900-year-old teacher told me the result after one of his regular 50 RMB/minute phone calls. He really is a good and dedicated teacher… he calls at least 30 times per week and spends over an hour each time talking to junior.”
I’d kill for a ‘Hangzhou’ or Dragon Wine commercial again!