Showing posts with label Metaphor. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Metaphor. Show all posts

Monday, September 21, 2009


By: T.R. Slyder,, AndyDisco on Twitter

As genius as I find South Park, and as indecisive as I can sometimes be, it surprises me that I have a clear-cut favorite episode. This one titled Manbearpig- you can watch the full episode at the link, I recommend it if you have the time. Here's a synopsis if you don't have the time- the South Park kids wind up trapped in a cave with Al Gore. The cave scenes are a bit of an homage to Goonies and Al Gore feels the need to step in be their protector from the biggest threat to planet Earth. The threat comes from Manbearpig- "half man, half bear, and half pig". Being that Al Gore appears to be the only person who has every heard of Manbearpig, he feels pretty darn important in his protecting the world from such a vicious, heinous entity. To know Manbearpig is to be terrified of him, conversely, if you AREN'T afraid of Manbearpig, that's even scarier. Whether you know it or not, Manbearpig is to be feared.

While the episode spoofs Al Gore being the lone protector to us from Global Warming, I find a lot of parallels today coming from the right wing reactionaries. I'm not saying its all Conservatives, or all Republicans, but the right wing certainly has a few fear mongers among them. I found the video below to be pretty similar to Al Gore protecting the South Park kids from Manbearpig.

That's how I roll.

Friday, September 18, 2009

My Over-Thought/Over-Reaching Metaphor of America

By: T.R. Slyder,, AndyDisco on Twitter

I'll post the YouTube clip, you can think about a possible metaphor, and scroll down to see if it's similar to mine. The clip is worksafe and is a tv commercial from 2007 you've probably seen before.

I think this clip sums up what's wrong with America.

There are plenty great things about our country, but I think this neatly sums up the bad stuff. It hits upon: vapid celebrity glamorization, talentless people becoming celebrities, consumer culture, the acceptability of ignorance, sex selling, using all of the aforementioned to sell a product that encourages sloth, and in the clip she is dressed as her Daisy Duke character- which is a from a warrantless movie-ization of a television classic that highlights what is rotten in the state of Hollywood.

While Ms. Simpson gained initial (semi) stardom from a music career, she become a mega-watt celebrity from a reality show. What about her on the show made her famous? Her marked stupidity and large boobies. She parlayed these two (well, three, I guess) into a career that was long on commercialism and short on talent. Because she is pretty yet untalented, her team of handlers found projects for her- largely products that already existed for her to do again, worse than the originals, and sell to American consumers. She re-did a Goldie Hawn movie, the Dukes of Hazard, and the only song of hers I can recall is her remake of Berlin's Take My Breath Away, which no one felt needed to be redone. Had she been more talented, she could have written her own songs or been signed to original movies. She wasn't, so didn't.

I'm not trying to put her down personally, I don't blame her for accepting what people offered to her. The reason this clip is a metaphor is because of her system of handlers who perpetuated such crass commercialism.

What resulted from her unoriginality? DirectTV said, "Wow, people will respect her as an authority figure regarding their selection of cable providers. Sure, we could have a respected intellectual cite polling data that shows the popularity of our product, or even hard evidence of our product's superiority, but would people listen to them? Sex sells beer, clothing, beauty products, grooming accessories, eye glasses, I bet it can sell cable television too! But we'll have to parlay her stupidity into something useful. Maybe we'll have her recite some technical mumbo jumbo that consumers don't understand, and instead of educating the consumer, we'll imply that their understanding is unimportant, no, glamorous! Yeah, that's it! Our message will be- let other people think for you, especially a famously unintelligent woman with big boobies!"

And maybe it worked. I have no idea how successful, or not, this advertising campaign was for DirectTv.

Two years later Ms. Simpson is now known primarily as a pop culture puppet whose career is currently in a tailspin. But there is good news- Hollywood is still cranking out prefab movies, the test scores of American students continue to hit all-time lows relative to other countries, and new celebrity puppets are popping up all the time.

That's how I roll.