Saturday, 24 December 2011

Dumb and Dumber

I finally got around to watching the film Dumb and Dumber starring Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels, a mere seventeen years after it first came out, and laughed so much I cried. Carrey can be extremely annoying, but in this case the humour works - although the characters are stupid, the film is in fact rather intelligently written and tightly directed. Which brings me to today's subject: these posters on the Tube showing bright young things holding up placards inscribed 'I WISH...' So what is that about? There are several versions of the poster with different wishes, and a helpful Internet address links to a lot more. Obviously this is about selling clothes but for once, the advertisements divert attention away from the main object into this eye catching sidetrack. Quite an annoying sidetrack, given the banal wishes and cloying cluelessness they express. I mean, if you can make a wish, it might as well be a decently ambitious one, not just some modest passing fancy. Like those three wishes jokes, you should be careful what you wish for.

The wishes fall into neat categories. Modest wishes (I wish more fun [sic], I wish for a puppy, not to be bored). Ridiculous fantasy wishes (I wish for international travel to be free, to travel the universe in a spaceship). Flaky wishes to change the world (I wish for people to realise their happiness, I wish love to all my loved ones) and the frankly self-centred (I wish to have everything I ever wished for). The standard stuff of the internet age I suppose, all those half-considered contributions vying for attention. The pleased look on the models' faces combined with the nonsense wishes is what I find annoying, but I suppose the target audience will love it, and maybe even send in their own wishes. "I wish for a puppy." Grow up, buy yourself a puppy if you really want one. There are some more personal statements that make a bit more sense (I wish to live in the same city as my sister, I wish to have my book published) . One I rather like runs, 'I wish people on our planet [would] start working together and not against each other'. I don't think that's what the advertising agency was looking for though. It's almost as if stupidity sells.
"Make a wish at"