Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The Reading Habits of TV Ad Characters, Or More Silliness

Have you seen this Mirena commercial?

I actually have nothing to say about the product being promoted (leave it to an English major to go for the peripherals)...

But the line "In five years... finish a book" always jars me. I know she's busy with her promotion, soccer coaching, kids, etc. and that a lot of people don't read as much as I do (i.e. have a social life), but she had time to learn French and an Associated Press-Ipsos poll suggests that the average American claimed to have read four books in 2006. I guess I'm surprised because commercials tend to aim for the "average" viewer. I hope she wasn't reading the one book over the whole course of the five years because she's really not going to remember what was in the first chapter by the time she gets to the end. Then again, maybe she's reading Ulysses and she can't remember the previous sentence by the time she gets to the next one... *sympathetic groan*

Of course, the wording is probably just to parallel the language of that final "...finish a sentence." I'm sure she's finished several sentences over the course of five years. But the singular "finish a book" preceded by other one-time actions (I assume she only moves to Memphis once) still sounds like it's implying that this is the one book she's finished in five years.

Of course, a couple online commentators thought she was implying that she had finished writing and publishing a book. In which case: *envious groan*


  1. HAHAHAHAHA! i love it! i know exactly which commercial you're talking about but the "finish a book" line hadn't bugged me. however, swapping pet peeves about commercials is a favorite pasttime - thanks for sharing ;)

  2. Aw! Thanks for commenting!

    Though I have to say, this is hardly on my top list of commercial peeves. (I.e. "It's your money; use it when *youuu* need it...")