Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Super Bowl ads, a little late

I'm sure everyone's seen this by now, but I still don't know how I feel about it. Happy that we're seeing a more hopeful depiction of Detroit in the media? A little confused about why that image is still hitched to Eminem, because what good has he ever brought to the city? Ambivalent about the city being hawked by one of the most failing of all the auto companies? It's all very overwhelming. What say you, readers?

Complicated emotions notwithstanding, there was one Super Bowl ad that inspired just one unadulterated emotion:

Glee. That's right. I said it.


  1. I can't get my head around 'Imported from Detroit.'

    Yes, one unadulterated emotion -- Rage.

  2. What the hell do you mean "What the hell is Eminem doing?" He released an album in 2010 that debuted at #1 and his 2009 album has sold over 5 million copies to date. I think that's enough. I'd much rather Detroit be tied to him than Kid Rock, Bob Seger or Ted Nugent.

  3. Em's newest album "Recovery", released this past June, is quite good (this coming from a white girl who has spent significant formative years in the D). He has returned to his image as an individual who, against all odds, found success and personal satisfaction in his fight to "prove" himself.
    He has had 3 serious hits with this album, and has collaborated with other artists on hit songs not part of this album (ex. Airplanes with B.o.B.).
    This is basically the most successful and visible he has been since 8 Mile.

    So that's what Eminem is doing anymore.

  4. I hated that ad. Instead of spending millions on advertisements, think of how much good Chrysler could have done with that money by donating it to direct services for the low-income population.

  5. @GH would it be in Chrysler's best interest to donate all the money?

    I think it was nice to see a feel good Detroit commercial.

  6. It would be, because they'd get great PR.

  7. The Super Bowl was watched by 111 million people and the ad has been pass around the internet since it's airing. In the minds of Americans, it tied the success of the company with the perseverance of a city. I'd say that would easily beat any ephemeral PR from a donation. Actually, I think the general reaction from a mass donation would have been, "Wait, we spent billions bailing out Chrysler and the rest of the auto industry and now they are giving away money?!?" People would have questioned the wisdom. They'd essentially just be giving money to people they may have laid off anyways. What kind of economic model is that?

    Chrysler, however, has thousands of employees whose continued stability depends on their employer's resurgence. I would contend that it would do more people a far greater public good for Chrysler to work towards its own growth than to make some transparent donation. Really, that seems to be the thesis of the commercial, that Chrysler is attempting to make a come back so that Detroit can as well.

  8. Ah yes, the "What's good for GE is good for America" argument. I don't buy it. Where was Chrysler when Detroit imploded over the last fifty years? Sitting pretty in Oakland County. Why would they thus claim to be part of Detroit's culture or rebirth - simply by future of the fact of working in the auto industry? How many manufacturing jobs have they moved out of the States as a result of globalization? Moreover, shouldn't it say "Imported from Turin" now that they're owned by Fiat? I agree that the commercial will economically benefit Chrysler; I disagree that it will end up benefiting Detroit in a material way. Trading on a popular notion of Detroit's rebirth in order to profit a company that will likely not create substantive benefits for Detroit is misleading at best.

    I'm not anti-globalization by any means, but I think it's ridiculous for a company that A) doesn't really care about Detroit outside of when it's politically or culturally expedient and B) isn't as "wholly American-grown" as it would like to pretend to trade on nationalism, especially in a move that seems to rehash the 1980s "Buy American!" debate.

  9. GH, It is 'What's good for GM (General Motors) is good for America."

    Otherwise, I agree with the bulk of what you say here.