GMC SIERRA: 'GIRLY-TRUCKS ON PARADE!'
I like truck commercials a lot, because they often provide more excitement and entertainment than the shows they interrupt. If, for example, you're watching the Chicago Bears play the Detroit Lions, Ford or Dodge can be counted on for the testosterone rush you would otherwise miss. Stuck watching "Third Rock from the Sun?" You need only wait for Nissan or Toyota to make you laugh. In fact, most truck commercials are so good it's almost a slap in the face that GMC has chosen to buck the trend with their new Sierra "One-Percenter" ad campaign. GMC's motto may be "Do One Thing, Do It Well," but that one thing sure ain't t.v. spots.
GMC seems to have forgotten that truck commercials are governed by unwritten but nonetheless very strict rules. Good truck ads have always contained three or more of the following five elements:
1) Guy Humor.
Take the latest ad for the Nissan Frontier, for example: guy is fishing from back of truck on public beach, guy hooks something big, guy uses truck to drag nuclear submarine from water. You've got numbers 1, 3 and 4 above, and you have a good commercial. GMC Sierra spots, on the other hand, have NONE of the five essential elements, and are therefore an affront to television viewers everywhere.
GMC Sierra ads center around an inane "One-Percenter" theme, meaning the Sierra was created for "...those who demand more from a truck than 99 percent of the population." Sounds good with your eyes closed, but if you're watching it becomes clear that 'demanding more' really boils down to 'wanting leather seats and smooth surfaces to drive on.' Clean-shaven, button-down Ken-dolls tow loads covered with tailored canvass to suspiciously clean urban locations while gently caressing miles of interior oak paneling. I mean, is this a truck, or a luxury car? If it's both, then it's really an SUV and GMC is very, very confused. Or perhaps "One-Percenter" really refers to those who would rather feel like popcorn-fattened circus elephants than rampaging African rhinos.
GMC may make big, burly trucks, but has somehow forgotten that 'big and burly' is what sells people on them in the first place. Trucks are the wild mustangs of the techno-industrial age, one of the last of an mind-numbing array of products that makes us feel like real Americans anymore. That feeling doesn't come from the machines themselves - it comes from t.v. commercials and the fun, exciting images they convey. If GMC can't remember that simple fact, they may as well make their "One Thing" a minivan.
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