what, exactly, is this an ad for?

Look, a movie projected on a four-story building in New York – set up by HBO, the cable TV channel that produced The Sopranos, Deadwood, Rome, Big Love, Six Feet Under, Sex and the City and so on. The New York Times YouTube critic Virginia Hefferman was there when they projected it and has a perceptive analysis of its function as advertisement rather than entertainment or art.

But what are they selling? I asked and asked. Maybe in the rooms in the film, if you look closely, maybe there are Altoids and Alli diet pills? No, said the HBO marketing woman. That is not how sophisticated marketing works now.

HBO Voyeur is about underscoring what HBO already does, its special ìitís not TVî magic ó how many tentacles HBO has, how deep into your life it already penetrates. HBO Voyeur, she said, is about retention.

The online version at HBO Voyeur may be purely intended to steal your soul, but it’s also quite good fun… I guess I’m a sucker for this kind of advertisement, eh?

22. July 2007 by Jill
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