War, Children, It’s Just A Shot Away


Sam Machkovech of The Atlantic doesn’t care for the TBWA\Chiat\Day-produced commercial above.

I couldn’t have asked for a more disappointing game-related ad. These aren’t the video games I play. Even at their highest levels of action and violence, video games play like sophisticated games of Cops & Robbers. They’re silly; they require colorful, funny-shaped controllers; they stay decidedly in the domain of detached fiction.
This ad equips people with real guns and simulates real-life, no-CGI combat. The thud of recoil, the screams of rockets, the dust of explosions… and the look of exasperation on that little, shotgun-wielding girl. The only things missing are the dead bodies on the receiving ends of each bullet and blast.

I’m not a gamer, so it’s all a blur to me. But I do like the multimillion dollar soundtrack.
[UPDATE] According to Variety, “Black Ops,” is the seventh installment in Activison Blizzard’s “Call of Duty” franchise, which has earned $4 billion to date. So that explains their rich taste in music.

About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. After working for seven agencies in five states and freelancing for several more, I ventured out on my own in 2009. Today, as head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon, I'm focused on providing effective integrated marketing solutions to mid-market clients.