1. Man is heading to the laundry room in his apartment building with a load of laundry. Two creepy kids bleat "you don't want to go to the laundry room. It's a Dead Zone. No bars. No calls. No texts. No e-mail."
Guy with inevitable two-days growth of beard (because if it's the weekend, and it's a commercial, men must have two-days growth of beard) says "but I have Verizon Wireless (or just "the Network," which sounds eerily like something out of 1984 or The Matrix.)
Creepy kids: "That's cool."
Message: Man who appears to be an adult is, in fact, just as infantile as everyone with a cell phone on TV: the phone must always be in hand, like a security blanket, and you simply cannot even THINK of going somewhere which might deny you instant contact with the outside world, which of course is constantly clamouring for your attention. You can't take a walk in the park, go shopping, or do laundry without your precious little toy which exists to give you a pathetic sense of "belonging" to society. Actually, it's not so much a security blanket as it is an umbilical cord, because GOD FORBID if you aren't bent over a tiny keyboard or watching ESPN on a little screen, you might find yourself (gasp) actually talking to a fellow human being. Can't have that!
2. Black guy tries to rent a room at a motel. Old grizzled white motel manager says "we've got one room left, but I doubt you'll want it-- it's a Dead Zone, blah blah blah...."
Black customer "But I've got the Network."
White Manager: (Obviously dissapointed) "ooohhh....well...towels are kinda scratchy!"
I can't be the only one who senses a racist vibe in this commercial. The old motel owner doesn't want to rent the room, it's clear: he tells the customer that he "probably doesnt want the room." Assuming that EVERY customer nowadays owns a cell phone, does this guy give this warning to EVERY person who shows up when it's the only room left to rent? And what's with the "towels are kinda scratchy" comment? Has the owner just let the room go to hell? Why are the towels in that room different from the towels in all the other rooms?
I've been at a lot of hotel rooms where cell phone service is bad. No hotel clerk has ever warned me that cell phone service is bad when I've signed in; quite the contrary, I'm often told that there's free wireless internet access when in fact the access is so spotty it's not worth the effort. So what the hell is really going on here? Why is the motel manager bad-mouthing his own motel? And how comfortable is that black customer really going to be there?