I have a glossy addiction and I take a (probably unhealthy) number of magazines, including some interior design publications. I don't read much of the text - it's more a design direction I sort of keep my finger on, as it is of interest to me, and I mostly just skim through them once, each.
This has been a slow-dawning realization, but something is really bugging me these days.
Tonight when flipping through the new House & Garden, I saw a circa 1940s photo of Walt Disney. I paused and wondered why Walt Disney would be in an ad in a decor magazine in 2006. Well, I'm glad I asked me that. It appears that the furniture manufacturer Drexel Heritage is going to unleash on the consuming public a collection of furniture in 2007 called the Walt Disney Signature Collection. Turns out this furniture was "inspired" by Disney.
This brought to mind the ad campaign that Thomasville furniture began in 2003 for Bogart™ of which they say: Like the screenstar himself, Bogart™ from Thomasville is cosmopolitan but never pretentious.
Bogey, pretentious? How's about when he appeared in The Barefoot Contessa, set in tropical climes, as the Contessa (Ava Gardner) and other rustics ran about barefoot and scantily clad, and meanwhile, Bogey sported a trench coat? Nah, he was never pretentious. But I'm chasing rabbits, aren't I?
It's so nice that a furniture company thought of ways to help you Bogart™ your joint. Like that's a bad thing.
Anyway, there's a passel of products out there sporting the likeness and/or name of dead icons to shill things created long after the death of these celebrities. Hell, call it the Casablanca collection or "Play it again, Sam," or anything else - but using the name taints the legacy of a great artist, in my opinion. I just think it's crappy.
I noticed several years ago that there's a fairly sexy line of lingerie that sports the name Marilyn Monroe. She has a wine too. Considering she was famed for not wearing underwear, it's a little odd to have a collection of undies sporting her name. And given the sad chemical nature of her demise, it seems more than a little ironic that her comely visage with her eyes at half-staff would be festooned on a bottle of an intoxicant. But that's just me--jaded cynic that I am.
Now, Raymond Burr who played Perry Mason had his own vineyard in Healdsburg California and his own wine label prior to his death some years back. His partner has continued that company, and in the case of a product a celebrity originated or endorsed in their lifetime, I have no problem with the heirs of the estate continuing in that vein.
Thomasville and Drexel Heritage are known to produce high-quality furniture, but nonetheless, I think this is an icky trend.
Oh, and speaking of semi-icky advertising - I was watching the extra footage and interviews from Top Chef on BravoTV.com, and before each clip they made me watch a 15 second ad spot for toilet paper. Well, if you eat, you HAVE to poop, so it makes sense, but it's a little too close to home to be called tasteful to advertise potty-ish-ness on a cooking program, don't you think?
Actually, the whole commercial thing is why I DVR everything - I can't get past the tremendous feeling of insult and resentment I get when I see what networks and their advertisers put out there and expect us to respond to. Well, I'm responding, but not in the way they hoped, I bet. Grrr.
That is all.