Watching so much TV, I see the same commercials repeatedly. The Astilin commercial has coined the phrase "environmental irritant" while showing a cigar burning in an ashtry. those of you who know me, know that I took immediate affront to this. Being a cigar smoker, I know that any cigar smoker worth his weight knows when and when not to light up. I have never met a group of people more willing to ask the people around them if they mind that they smoke a cigar. One of the most common responses that I have received when I have asked, especially from women, is that it is fine, that it reminds them either of their father or their grandfather. this is really not the comment that a middle-aged man wants to get, but since it allows me to smoke I don't mind. Other than the one time I got a comment from a dealer at a crap table marked as a smoking table, have I ever been asked not to smoke.
To me, again in the context of TV viewing, the "environmental irritant" is more the repetitiousness of being forced to watch the same commercials repeatedly. Last night my wife and I watched 3 prime-time television shows on two different major networks, without exaggeration we saw the new Old Navy women's blue jean commercial at least 12-15 times, at least 3 times we saw it back to back. That is truly irritating!
For the last two years, I have become very concerned about the mental health of the men and women who write the Burger King commercials. The King has become quite strange. I am now beginning to worry about Wendy's. The idiot with the red wig chasing the chicken in the old Road Runner -- come on, no chicken can reach the pedals!
Having been an Engish major, I understand the concept of "the willing suspension of disbelief". This is where as an audience member when watching a play or movie, you agree to believe what is put in front of you. This is why we accept characters such as Peter Pan, Puck and Batman. The scenario, though, has to be one where the story line explains the character's abilities. For instance, the Nasonex commercial where the bumblebee talks about the product with an Antonio Banderas accent. Is it that bees pollinate and they are talking about allergies so we are supposed to label the bee as a romatic latino lethario?
I have begun to DVR alot of the shows that I could very easily watch but I would rather fast forward thru the commercials. Half hour shows become 20 minutes, hour shows become 40 minutes. It is amazing how a DVR takes care of "environmental irritants". Another plus for Time Warner