Steve Martin sits at a table and explains how to make a wad of paper with the necessary supplies of: paperclips, scissors, a stapler, chewing gum, a hammer — and proceeds to conduct an elaborate demonstration of folding and mutilating a piece of paper while the political message is made via signs being held endorsing Bob Kerry.
Chosen, I should add, by a celebrity panel including Eddie Vedder, Oliver Stone, and, um … Markos Moulitsas. Here’s the winning spot; brimming with Absolute Moral Authority and devoid of any coherent reason for voting for Obama aside from the bare assertion that he’ll represent the left and right — a fact completely belied by his voting record — it is, I hope you’ll agree, the perfect pick. Coming soon to a battleground state near you.
Ron Paul (R): Non political. Includes a large happy family. Very festive. Makes the candidate appear warm and human. Overall rating: its great. Extra points for not wussing out and saying the forbidden word “Christmas”.
Mike Huckabee (R): This commercial recieved a lot of media attention while pundits asked themselves weather the “floating cross” in the background was intentional or not. Huckabee says it was not and it’s just a bookcase. How that is a book case, we have no idea, since it looks like its a window, but whatever. Good points for the overall format. Bad points for mentioning “Jesus Christ” as Christmas is a federal (and thus secular) holiday honoring the philosopher Jesus of Nazareth whom most of the country believes is God, however not all Huck. Not all.
Hillary Clinton (D): Not a terrible idea but one that was terribly executed. The music is a little too menacing and the visuals fall right into the liberal caricature she’s trying to avoid: she’s sitting down using YOUR tax money to give YOU gifts. Taking our money and regifting it to us is not exactly keeping with the Season. Including “Middle Class Tax Cuts” is also a gaffe since her husband famously promised them during the 1992 campaign and failed to deliver on it. For that reason she should only mention that promise of hers with an explanation, not just putting it out there asking to be attacked. Ends with a weak “happy holidays”. Overall rating: Bad.
Rudy Giuliani (R):: A little silly, a little goofy, but softens up and shows some humor on the gruff and tough mayor. The “WHAT!?” is all wrong in the context they give here. I suspect a line was cut after the fruitcake objection. Something saying how lame a fruitcake is would make more sense because Rudy’s WHAT reaction is in the fashion of “WHAT? Are you crazy!?” where as if all a person said to him was “a fruitcake?”, he would have given a “whaaaat? whats wrong with a fruitcake??” type “WHAT”. Get it? His response about why the fruitcake is a good idea is also pretty 3-Stooges. Could have toned it down JUST a tad.Overall rating: not so good. too awkward.
His second one is much better:
Overall rating: Good. Ain no one gonna be gettin along this campaign. Even Santa thinks its a pipe dream. Cute.
John Edwards (D): This one is the best ‘on message’ ad as it isn’t in-your-face political because it gets to that point from the back door of motives and not policy. This would win out of all of them if it weren’t for the ridiculous and semi-insulting political correctness of ignoring that its Christmas. The (holiday?) tree in the background is barely visible, Christmas is not mentioned at all, and the Edwards camp even labeled this video on you youtube: John Edwards – “Season” TV Ad. Season? For someone who wants to be so generous with other people’s money, he sure is a Scrooge here.
John McCain (R): This seems to be McCains response to the Huckabee cross flap, as if to say “you think that’s a cross? I’ll show you a gad dang cross”. The story is a powerful one. As a Christmas ad, its only so-so. Overall rating: good