Wednesday, February 25, 2009

6485: Trust Me, The Typical Adman Is Pathetic.

The truth is, the problem with TNT series Trust Me has nothing to do with the cultural cluelessness of its creators. Or their limited imagination and subpar writing skills.

No, the core issue is the lack of inherent drama in the advertising business. Think about it. The few successful TV programs set in adland environments made the industry secondary—or even tertiary—to the main stories. Thirtysomething and Mad Men have spotlighted human conflict and emotion well ahead of hatching campaigns. Hell, Bewitched realized hocus-pocus hijinks trump commercial productions. Haven’t most of us watched focus groups that were more compelling than this dreck?

Trust Me clings to the delusional belief that audiences will be interested in our craft. It doesn’t help that the main characters are mediocre adpeople, and their agency is ordinary at best. Focusing on a dull job and hackneyed executives leads to a boring viewing experience.

Reports indicate ratings are tumbling like, well, the advertising industry. And like the advertising industry, the only hope for Trust Me involves executing radical changes. If the show’s creators hold true to their professional backgrounds—and White male arrogance—don’t bet on seeing any attempt to improve.

In the end, Trust Me remains painfully accurate on so many levels.

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