Tuesday, May 29, 2012

An open letter to Harvey Norman (AM)

Dear Harvey Norman,
Usually when Miss Soft Crab writes an open letter, Miss Soft Crab eases in to it. Miss Soft Crab starts nice and gentle, and then Miss Soft Crab rams it home when Miss Soft Crab is good and ready.  But Harvey Norman, your latest ad is such a bunch a total bullshit, Miss Soft Crab does not feel like doing you any favours. 

You know the ad i'm talking about.  It's the one where a man and a woman are in the kitchen doing some domestic labour. The man excuses himself because the footy's about to start.  He goes in to the living room, which miraculously turns in to a football ground  (I assume this is to indicate that the TVs and shit you guys sell are so rad, they will make you feel like you're at the ground, but I hate this ad so much I haven't even registered what it's for. Truth be told, Harvey Norman, I'm not even 100% sure it's your ad, but I think it is, and I need someone to blame). The man looks really really happy, and then a small boy comes in the room and says "Daddy!" and hops up on the couch with the man so they can watch TV together. In the background, the woman comes out of the kitchen and leans against the door frame and tilts her head as if she is really touched by this vision of the special men in her life bonding over the football.

Um, you've got to be fucking kidding me Harvey Norman.You're trying to sell TVs by telling us:
  • women belong in the kitchen, and have no interest in the footy
  • only men and their infant sons like sitting on the couch watching the footy  
  • women derive a LOT of satisfaction from taking a brief break from their domestic labour to look at the back of their man's head while he is sitting on the couch watching the footy. 
WTF, Harvey Norman.This ad peddles a totally antiquated, totally effed version of domestic life, and one made even more nightmarish by the implication that in this world, women don't like football. What the eff?!  Nuclear families. Women working while Men relax. I guess he's been at work all week and needs to relax, right Harvey Norman?  I guess she's just been at home looking after the kid all week, and therefore doesn't need that time on the couch.
This is the worst kind of bullshit Harvey Norman. The kind that appears simple and innocuous and fleeting, but nevertheless implies things that are totally effed and have no place on my TV, which, I'm sorry to say, I bought at Harvey Norman.  You should know better. And if you know nothing else, know this: I wouldn't buy electronic goods from you if you were the last purveyor of electronic goods on earth. Bam!

Love from K

PS: Also you want to sell some TVs? Storyboard this, mother effers. 

OPTION 1 - Based on actual events that took place at Chez K on Sunday

Note: This scene takes place in a small but cosy apartment, where there are no dishes to be done because the occupant cleverly went out for brunch to avoid creating dishes. Specifically the breakfast pizza here - try it, it's unbelievable  

Woman gets on couch an hour before the footy starts, to be sure she doesn't miss it. 
Woman is delighted to discover that a repeat of Downton Abbey is on. 
Woman watches it until the footy starts. 
Woman has a lovely time, especially up until three quarter time because her team has been quite competitive. 

OPTION 2 - Based on events that are yet to occur but universe, if you're listening, it would be really rad if they could occur at some point this winter. 

Note: This scene takes place in a cosy cottage type deal, possibly in Hobart, and there may be a fire going in the background. There is definitely a cute dog curled up on a rug somewhere. It opens with a man and woman in a kitchen. Man loooks like a young Mandy Patinkin. 

Man: "Honey, the footy's about to start."
Woman: High five!
Man goes to oven and pulls out tray of party pies and sausage rolls.
Woman places tomato sauce, stubbies (in stubbie holders...football is a winter sport after all and no one likes a cold hand) and serviettes on the coffee table.
Man, woman, cute dog all take a seat at the couch.
All take a party pie and start eating.
First siren sounds.

Bam! TVs get sold. 


  1. Ad agencies are inhabited by psychopaths who despise their clients as much as / more than consumers. Ad agency heaven is sending a passive-agressive three way fuck you to competitors, clients and consumers while coked to the max. Don't take it personally, it only encourages them.

  2. Shit yes, can't believe I only just saw this post!! My bf and spent the entire 2012 season paying out this ad, thank god I am with a lovely man who understands and agrees that this ad is bullshit. I actually thought it was a joke at first. On top of everything else, the AFL have been trying to make the game more appealing to women/families and this just takes 50 steps backwards. Let's see what HN come up with this year...