Monday, July 2, 2007

On Sheeple and advertising - a story of irony

Five O'Clock Shadow 49.jpg

Originally uploaded by evo_terra

I know that most of advertising is pretty clueless. Hey, I work in the industry, so I have the right to say this... because it's true. And often times, the irony is priceless.

Take the term "sheeple", an amalgamation of "sheep" and "people" -- referring to people's tendencies to behave like sheep, blindly doing what they are expected and told. It's a great term that I don't use often enough.

So imaging my surprise when I learned that Scion was using the term as part of their non-traditional ad campaign:
"Little Deviants," the new campaign from ATTIK, reinforces Scion's business model around personalization and after-market customization, while positioning the car as a Neo-like saviour in a drab, Soviet-bloc world of buildings and streets where factotums wander around with brushes painting everything grey.

In the campaign, xD is a kind of automotive anarchist, running about with a cohort of gremlin-esque deviants, attacking the battleship-grey world of "Sheeple."
Is the irony lost on you? "Please don't be a sheeple and buy our car, just like we're telling you to do with this non-conformist and non-traditional ad campaign." Yeah guys, I get the appeal. And the rest of the campaign sounds like a lot of fun. But you lost me with "sheeple".


  1. Okay Evo!

    I know I said I haven't been to Vancouver since I was 12. However, a good canadian friend of mine, Boo Jupiter, is now living out there, and she is helping put on a bicycle showgirl cabaret. This is far from touristy, and quite possibly exactly what you have been asking for.

    If you go, you absolutely must attempt to find Boo Jupiter and tell her JohnBoze sent you. Here is some stuff they have posted about the event:

    The B:C:Clettes present ROUGE et NOIR: A Bicycle Cabaret

    With performances by:

    Sidria: *sultry torch singer who will leave you breathless*

    Fossilosopher: *elder bikepunk spinning wheel words of wisdom*

    Bring Your Own Cabaret: *pushing your buttons and then unbuttoning them*

    Creaking Planks: *the iPod of 1906 plays demented nautical circus orchestration*


    THE B:C:CLETTES: *bicycle showgirls: old favorites plus three new numbers*

    JULY 12TH – 14TH, 2007
    at The Western Front
    303 East 8th Avenue
    Vancouver BC
    $8 Thursday / $15 Friday & Saturday

    Gather at 7
    **Dress resplendent**
    Show at 8

    Tickets at:
    Our Community Bikes: 3283 Main St
    People's Coop Bookstore: 1391 Commercial Dr
    Spartacus Books: 319 W. Hastings St.

    Contact the B:C:Clettes for more info:

  2. On the "don't be a sheep--instead buy *our* stuff! just like every one else" theme: Yeah, I know. That's the reason why I still don't ever drink a Sprite if I'm paying for it. Their "obey your thirst" campaign *would* have been great if they didn't wreck the delicious poke-fun-at-all-commercials angle at the very end of every ad with "Obey your thirst. Sprite."

    It's like, basically, they spend the whole commercial pointing out how dumb commercials really are, and how you really shouldn't be listening to what they have to say. And *then* they come back around and, essentially, say "Obey US. Drink Sprite. Now."

    If they just left that one line off at the end, I'd be a happy Sprite drinker. But no, they had to go and ruin it.

    Furry cows moo and decompress.


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