Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Turn the Tub Around "I can't believe it's not butter", commercial Starring Megan Mullally, analyzed.

When I first saw the Megan Mullally commercial, "I can't believe it's not Butter - Turn the tub Around", I didn't know what to think.
In my opinion a commercial's shock value usually is a good thing (but not always), but something about this commercial's shock value bugged me.

This is the kind of commercial where if somebody connected to the commercial had hired me for feedback, I would have struggled to come up with my best response. Suffice it to say that it was probably a week or two after seeing the commercial a few times that a bell went off in my head and I realized what was "wrong" with the "Turn the Tub Around" commercial.

My delayed reaction was in part because I only saw the commercial every couple of days during a television show commercial break. I suppose if I had viewed the commercial over and over several times in a short time span I might have come up with something faster.

By the way, I LOVE Megan Mullally in Will and Grace and I believe she is one of those actor / directors who gets it. Fortunately, I don't have to criticize her performance in this commercial to get my point across. Because I respect Megan Mullally so much I decided to research the making of this commercial to see what went wrong. I soon discovered that there is a companion music video to "Turn the Tub Around" that I had never viewed. Sure enough, within a mere few seconds of watching the music video, I realized that the music video executed in a way that the commercial did not.

All one has to do is watch the companion music video to see that everything the music video is, the commercial is not.

The music video takes the time to show Mullally as an innocent shopper getting caught up in the moment, whereas the 30 second commercial version portrays Mullally as an over the top DIVA caught in her own 1979 Turn the Tub Around Time Machine. I believe what the commercial fails to do is compress the best elements of the music video into a 30 second commercial. No easy task for sure, but it looks to me like no attempt was even made.
The power of editing shows how easy it is to change an actors performance. In my opinion the music video and commercial have very little in common, and that probably is not a good thing.
Everything the music video is, the commercial is not, and that is the problem that I see with thia commercial. That doesn't mean the commercial is a failure. In my opinion it just means the commercial is not delivering full impact. For everybody who likes the "I can't believe it's not butter, turn the tub around" commercial, there are probably 2 or 3 other people who roll their eyes.

Could the "I can't believe its not butter" commercial starring Megan Mullally be fixed? Probably quite easily. There probably is enough footage already shot that if constructed in a proper order would create a more effective 30 second commercial.

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