Advertising That Pretends It Isn’t

As consumers grow more and more weary of a marketing-driven culture and become more inclined to tune out commercial messages, advertisers are getting seriously creative in their efforts to move product. In fact, the new breed of (usually) satirical ads look more like short films than product pitches, and some lucky companies have succeeded in making their brand not only a household name, but a cultural milepost. “Humor is the best way to cut through the multichannel clutter in the age of cable and satellite TV,” and the most successful of the new ads are “simply co-opting images television viewers are bombarded with daily.”