Groups of partiers in their own hot air balloons race around in the sky, intermingling here and there with men and women enjoying each other’s company at a one-of-a-kind experience. Plenty of CGI but in the end commercials conjure dreams in people’s minds and make them feel very real emotions.
TV does a wonderful job of creating a veritable dreamscape that we can peer into. These productions are full of whimsy and wonder; most of all — that’s where you want to be. You want to be one of the cool kids, to be carefree, to be where the actions at, to live the good life. Ads cant help but create these emotions in us, after all those are the emotions they want to instill in the audience and associate with their brand (in this case Perrier). TV commercials are very effective in doing this; to the point that they rarely bother explaining the unique, differentiating qualities of their product in order to get you to buy it.
But if their associative powers are so strong, perhaps people will develop other associations. The people are all having a wonderful time and it’s worth noting that all the men are white.
And the masterstroke of Madison Avenue , in this case advertising agency Oglivy Paris, is their inclusion of minority women but excluding minority men.
It sends very clear signals reinforcing the privileges enjoyed by white men and encourages the ostracism of minority men, who are clearly nothing but obstacles in the way of white men.
The stunning commercial features a number of minority women (Indian woman, East Asian woman, black woman) – all enjoying the company of white men.
Asian men are not invited to the party, they are not part of the flirtation. The fantasy making of Madison Avenue and its largely white executives is truly solipsistic as if to say “If this were our dream, here’s what it would look like.” Only white men are the ticket for women into this dreamscape; and the positive emotions that it conjures. Thanks Oglivy Paris and Perrier – America does not need to import your brand of racism and you are on our watchlist.
The associative mind doesn’t think about going to the Perrier balloon party per-se – but the subconscious mind does want to belong, to have social status, to have a social life and be included. If Asian men are generally left out of social gatherings, are they really ideal relationship options? Perrier calls itself extraordinary. It certainly is when it comes to perpetuating the highly manipulative notion that white men should have their pick while minority men don’t need to bother showing up.