Are they even trying anymore?

I’m sitting here watching Shark Week, because I love the Discovery Channel, and I see this commercial, that might be the dumbest ever.

It’s for some Mitsubishi SUV, the currently vogue “crossover” type, which is basically a Station Wagon with pretensions of being a half-assed Jeep when it grows up. I hate these things, but that’s unrelated to my point here - I don’t even remember the name of the thing, but frankly, I don’t care. It’s one of the many uninspired and unnecessary such vehicles on the road.

The commercial posits the following: a family, with requisite rebellious skateboarding teen sons, are going on vacation. To a dilapidated shack in the desert. The punchline is that there’s an empty swimming pool out back. The kids shred to their little hearts’ content, oblivious to how hollow their dreams will ring in a few short years, when their knees start to go bad, and dropping out of community college begins to look like a bad choice.

This touching story aside, what do we learn about the car itself? Two things, as a matter of fact:

- Magnesium shift paddles.

- 30 gig music and navigation system.

That’s it. The paddle shift is a nice touch, if you want to play Formula 1 with your four-speed automatic, but I’m actually mildly insulted that the geniuses in marketing think I give a shit what metal the paddles are made out of. Not “100 millisecond shift times” or “seven-speed transmission”, but “the paddles are made of exotic metals”. That is seriously the best you have to offer?

The other major point is that the car is a sub-standard iPod. Great. The two people who care about that feature, don’t already have a MP3 player, and would make the huge mistake of buying a Mitubishi, both of them will be thrilled.

It’s a welcome change from the ads that play on financing deals and leasing, and I’m sort of pleased that they’re competing on features, but aren’t there better points you could be advertising on?

Anyway, back to Shark Week, but that was just so thunderously stupid, and this blog so seldom updated, that I had to share.

UPDATE: Saw the Ad again. It’s the 2007 Outlander.

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