Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Corporates and tacticals

Beirut/NTSC has a major impression that the ads the Free Patriotic Movement is doing for its candidates - derivative products of its main brands - are frankly so much better than the trivialities it has been issuing for its mothership - the brand at large. Beginning with the dull new add "change" with a girl and a guy holding a remote control to indicate the change in question - Sorry, I'd rather zap to another channel. But the real gems are the one being produced for Ibrahim Canaan candidate in the Metn area, his headline goes "matten sawtak" - which means both "Throw your ballot in the Metn," but also "make your vote more confident." Brilliant. And that's just the beginning, because their Achrafieh candidate Massoud Achkar keeps earning top marks - not only is his slogan "Achrafieh el bidaye" but now on one huge wall it continues "bidayet el taghyir" (The beginning of change - which implies the name of the list he is on "rehabilitation and change") - however, the trick is that this is only a slight deformation of the original words of the song being referred to "bidayet el Bachir" (The beginning of Bachir - in reference to Lebanese Forces creator Bachir Gemayel who was later president elect but never sworn in as assassinated before the date). Now, if anyone remembers that FPM built their whole campaign around the concept of "Sah" (Or correct, or right depending on the context), then they scored a goldmine with their candidate Nicolas Sahnawi... Simply by splitting his family name into two parts Nicolas Sah...Nawi they had a ready made slogan as "sah... Nawi" means in Arabic "Yes, I intend to...." so just toss "change" and "rehabilitation" into it and voila!
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