I’ve loved the New Yorker Magazine ever since I lived in NYC for college and saw my best friend Jen Tsang reading one. I love the fiction, the articles, some of the cartoons (the ones that make sense, anyway), and even the lengthy reviews of music and art in NYC, because it makes me feel cool and hip and urbane and sophisticated to think: “Yes! once lived there!” and “Yes! I like listening to music!” even if since having had a child I’ve only been to maybe one opera in seven years.
But there’s something I despise about the New Yorker, something that makes me sort of writhe internally in irritation and unease, part of the magazine that seems completely OFF — and that is their ads.
Now SkyMall has a certain panache with their in-your-face ads for “butt enhancing underwear,” Harry Potter Jewelry for adults, and expensive lawn chairs for dogs. They’re unapologetic about their eclectic, strange and off-the-wall products, and it’s perfect to get your mind off the fact that you’re hurtling through the air in a tin can, holding tightly to the slightly-greasy armrests every time the plane is buffeted by turbulence.
But I expert, well, MORE from the New Yorker. I read that not just to divert myself from potential impending doom in a 747. I want them to have ads for products and services that are witty and exurberent and awesome and cool, because that’s the way I want to FEEL when I read the magazine. Instead, you typically find something like the selections I’ve included below.
In order to help the New Yorker staff understand what is so wrong and horrible about these ads, I’ve added useful text explaining how each of them is a big fat FAIL.
I know it’s important to have advertisers; I get that. But why THESE things? God! Think of all the people who read this magazine – countless creative, artistic people across the country. Think of their diverse skills and interests! And yet you choose to offer — a Happy Labrador Pin? A Big Ass Fan? Clearly there is room for improvement in the ad-picking department, that’s all I’m saying. There’s GOT to be something better. There’s just GOT to!
Take a look and see if you agree with me. I have a feeling you’ll be AD-mitting to a similar sense out irritation with these choices!
(About the Fan ad one: It’s not that I oppose the word “ASS.” If you know me, you probably know that I LOVE the word “ass” and use it frequently, often inappropriately! But it is to be used in the right inappropriate way, my friends, in the right kind of humor and the right kind of comment. A fan company does not deserve to use this magnificent word in their ad to try and entice people to buy a FAN.)