Apr. 29th, 2017

stevenpiziks: (Default)
Google Home has a new ad that (supposedly) features a same-sex married couple with children.  Let's have a look, shall we?


I'm glad they're showing this, I suppose, but I'm seeing the cowardly cop-out.  Let's take a media literacy look, shall we?

Firstly, all throughout they use odd camera angles, foreground objects, and blur to confuse and hide. The camera hides us behind water glasses, pans across blurry people, and looks upward from weird angles. This hides what's going on, in case you're offended by it.

Then, when Man #1 enters, he's blurred out and he walks behind yet another foreground water glass. Then we pop to shot of Google Home sitting on the table, and another blurred person walks in front of it. Man #1 wants to know about his day, and a shaky-cam shudders and shimmies while we get a shoulder touch--just a teensy one. Wouldn't want to show any real affection, would we? Nor would we want to show a gay man touch his children at the breakfast table, for fear of anyone screaming "Molester!"

We pop back to GH on the table, surrounded by more blurry objects, then a shot of the kids surrounded by blurry water glasses, then a shot of Man #2 surrounded by blurry water glasses as he asks about his day.  Blur, blur, blur.

The camera pans sideways to push Man #1 out of the shot so we don't see the guys together for too long--wouldn't want that!  Then a shot of Man #2 framed by blurry children as he offers to "take the kids."

Then we have the big moment!  The camera pans left in order to center the blurry boy in the middle of the screen so his whole head takes up the screen just as Man #1 zips by Man #2 for a good-bye kiss--WHICH WE DON'T SEE because it's blocked by the Giant Blurry Boy Head.

Did Man #1 actually kiss Man #2? We can't tell for sure, and Google is too chicken to say.

Then another shot of kids and blurry water glasses, and we end with a brief, semi-obscured shot of Man #1 and Man #2 as Man #2 rushes off with the children.

The commercial is a clever piece of cowardice that Google pretends is bravery. If they get too much flak, they can claim that the men are brothers or even roommates. If they get support and praise, they can say the men are married.  Cowardice. We expected better, Google.

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