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Sunday, September 10, 2006
Levels of Reality, Beer Ad Division, Or: What's This "YouTube" Thing I Keep Hearing About?

Coors Light is running a couple of NFL-keyed ads with ""fake"" press conferences, and the number of quote marks I used there is deliberate. Here's one of the ads, with ex-coach Dick Vermeil:

So what are we seeing? The first-level response is one that you eliminated instantly, that it's a press conference with Dick Vermeil answering questions about a Coors Light promotion. The second-level response is that it's questions about a Coors Light promotion, humorously intercut with answers from a post-game press conference. The questions and answers obviously don't match up, both in the recording medium (film vs. video, although it's a little hard to tell here from all the processing done in the capture and uploading), and in the camera angles -- Vermeil's not looking where he should be (he looks both left and right, but there's only one bunch of "questioners"). The overall effect is like some old novelty records, none of which come to mind at the moment.

But that's not what it is either! Vermeil is sitting in front of a backdrop of Coors Light logos, and he's obviously been paid by them. So the questions aren't really matched up with real press conference answers after the fact; the whole thing is scripted, but edited to look like a clumsy fake, instead of a slick fake. If there's such a thing as a fake fake, this is it.

UPDATE: Another:

FURTHER REVIEW: Commenters at the YouTube videos add the observation that if these were "real", you'd expect Vermeil to change his clothes from bit to bit. Also, the Bill Walsh series, which I intend to cap next week, show him as he is now, not as he was when last he coached over a decade ago.


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