May 24, 2006

The new commercial.

On stage, live, before a play. Yuck! And since the actors are live, you'd feel pressure to applaud them. That's the social convention. We don't boo anymore, not when there's a real human being on the stage. We could start again, though.


James Wigderson said...

Wouldn't it be easier to have a better concessions stand in the lobby? A beer, bratwurst and some nachos might even keep me awake during Andew Lloyd Weber.

SWBarns said...

"We don't boo anymore"

--You have obviously never been to Philadelphia.

hat said...

We even, for some reason, applaud at movies. Can anyone explain this to me?

goesh said...

I'm all for it! There is a primitive thrill in heckling, booing. I remember being a heckler at a KKK rally one time - God it was fun!

Sissy Willis said...

"We don't boo anymore, not when there's a real human being on the stage" unless it's a Republican giving a commencement address. :)

David said...

No Commercials. I will wait til it comes out on DVD or let TIVO record it so I can skip the commerical.

The mind boggles at the thought of live commercials selling personal products, etc. Remember Johnny Carson getting hit in the face with a dozen pies after parodying the same?

Dave said...

"The mind boggles at the thought of live commercials selling personal products, etc. "

Well, this is how TV originally worked. See soap operas, etc. Soap operas got their name because Procter & Gamble sponsored the shows. P&G sells soap, hence "soap opera."

They would have actors from the show do the ads as interstitials.

chuck b. said...

Yeah, there's something kind of retro and charming about this. I bet the actors really ham it up.


I like to hiss and boo.

Simon said...

"We don't boo anymore, not when there's a real human being on the stage."

Unless we're graduating, and there's a politician on-stage with whom we disagree, of course.

Jeremy said...

That tradition that Dave mentions continues with talk radio wherein everyone from Dr. Laura to Phil Hendrie shills for flowers, books, and H57 South African Hoodoo or something

whamiam said...

So Totally Wrong. Being subjected to a commercial after paying $40 to $100+ for a theater seat trumps any social convention against booing, hissing, heckling, shouting anti-capitalist slogans or smacking anyone who thinks it appropriate to applaud such crass commercialism.

MadisonMan said...

People don't boo at live theater because it's an admission that they've spent good money for bad entertainment. When you boo, you have to acknowledge your own foolhardiness.

In contrast, it's easy to boo, say, a commencement speaker. After all, you haven't paid for a ticket!

I've resisted mightily the urge to rimshot "unless there's a real human being on the stage" and Republican giving a commencement address. Thanks for the straight line!

Palladian said...

I like to watch 50's game shows and have seen a lot where Bud Collyer or someone would be welcoming Kitty Carlisle one second and holding up a bottle of Enden dandruff shampoo and smiling the next. I especially like the game shows where they've figured out how to weave commercials into the fabric of the program, like the Price is Right, which is basically an hour of commercials, or the old "I've Got a Secret" where Garry Moore would smoke Winston cigarettes (and hand out cartons of them to contestants), since Winston were the sponsors of the show. Moore was a great advertisement for quitting smoking as well, because he had to retire after he had throat cancer and eventually died of emphysema.

Anyway, people accepted commercials on TV because broadcast TV was free. But I cannot abide them at venues where I've paid to get in, such as movies or plays. What's next, Zubin Mehta holding up a pack of Bob Evans pork sausages before conducting Mozart's 24th piano concerto?

KCFleming said...

It would surely diminish the suspension of disbelief one engages for a performance of Becket to be first greeted by an ad for Cocoa Puffs.

That said, there'd be a bit of delicious irony seeing Angels in America or Rent or some other post-modern anti-Western diatribe have to sell Cheetos before decrying capitalism.

And given sufficnet ironic distance, it might be hard to discern a commercial playlet from performance art. See? I'm not really going along with this. It's me being all ironic and stuff. Might be cool.

Palladian said...

I remember that the set for "Cats" was made of a lot of oversized reproductions of product containers, like Coke cans and the like. I wonder if that was an early instance of this new trend.

Yes, I did see "Cats". I know, I know. I was a kid! I had no choice!

Pogo, I kind of like the idea now that you put it that way.

"Hi, I'm Bertolt Brecht, here to tell you about Lux for dishes..."

michael farris said...

I used to listen to a fair amount of oldtime radio and on a few shows (esp. situation comedies) the commercials were more or less seemlessly integrated into the dialogue.

Sue: What's gotten into Henry lately?
Marge: I don't know about that, but I was just about to make lunch, let's go into the kitchen.
Sue: Say that margarine seems to be spreading easily.
Marge: Yes, it's that new Zip brand. It spreads easily, is nutritious and tasty.
Sue: Must be expensive then.
Marge: No, it's very easy on the pocketbook.
Sue: Is it hard to find?
Marge: No, it's available in all fine grocery stores.
Sue: I'll have to get some on my way home, speaking of which, why _is_ my Henry spending so much time down at the lodge?
Marge: I don't know, but George is there everynight too...