Saturday, July 05, 2008

No Sweat, and I am lying

Struggling TV channels usually sell out part of their airtime to Tele-Shopping Networks. These infomercials have a distinct language and tone of their own (Check out the Bingo chips ad, a spoof of this concept since I can't find any original video). A few of these products are spiritual (like feng shui stones, or magnetic bracelets). But majority of them attack the number one problem of the sloppy,belching and lethargic viewers who are even daring to watch the show: Weight Reduction. The devices targeting this problem have become progressively ingenious, promising lesser strain, minuscule effort and BIG results. A product showcased on channel Sanskar yesterday (which has content worth another post in itself!) was the HomeJogger.

The HomeJogger!

It is a white and red plastic contraption equipped with a remote. See those aesthetic red incurvatures ? You lie down and place your ankles on them. Then you let the red platform sway to and fro and pray that it hypnotizes you into believing it has some positive effect on your throbbing bulges. To reinforce their case, they have decided to showcase real people, rather than muscled surreal bodies which you may never even see in your lifetime (forget about owning one!). As testimonials for HomeJogger we have:

1. An average looking yellow tee adorned youngster who presents his perfect inability at enjoying a jog
2. A middle aged saree draped aunty who over her 35 year life has perfected the art of appearing out of breath
3. A female call centre executive - the sanest of the lot
4. The fourth one is the best. He's a pot bellied uncle - with no ordinary pot. This humongous belly is so wild and unfettered, that it had its own independent life. It exuberantly jiggles and sways against the motion of the HomeJogger. When viewed from the feet end of the uncle, the tummy comfortably engulfs his face. His body hair, excited by whole calisthenics stand upright making quite a distasteful appearance.

The persuasive infomercial frequently aims to show these candidates 'enjoying' their stint with the Home Jogger. Their feet seem inconveniently elevated. Still, they manage to hold an expression of distinct amiability and comfort with the situation.

You may question my peaked interest in this device, since they are a dozen variations are out there which too make ill-fated promises. But its the USP of this contraption that seemed enchanting. The jingle goes like this:
Home Jogger se lete lete sehat banaaein
Jeevan ka dushman motapa ghataaein
(Workout using Home Jogger while just lying down, Reduce weight - the Villian of Life)

To improve the believability of their promise, they have decided to mock all other forms of effort and exercise. A few excerpts:
Aap hi bataaiye - aadhi neend se uth kar, joote aur tracksuit pehan kar.... (Who will wake up from a deep slumber, painfully put on a tracksuit and shoes....)
Aur phir paseene ka bhi problem.... (Exercise has an unwanted side-effect of sweat)
Aur aap isse on karke baaki kaam bhi kar sakte hain (at this point, the saree aunty is shown reading a magazine while lying flat, the magazine obediently swaying with her. The words would be a blur to her, but I am sure the pictures are conveying sufficient information)

The hostess of the show appears convinced and motivated while praising the features. I am sure while taking breaks in-between the shoots, she would be convulsing to let out the pent up giggles. The younger techies would be logging on to facebook emoting LMAO and ROFL to their buds. This cheerful, optimistic lady as a child surely must have been a go-getter; An ambitious I-must-reach-the-pinnacle girl. Because you require tremendous resilience to dole out such crap about useless products and yet maintain your sanity.

But I guess I shouldn't be the one mocking - since having entered the field of marketing, I suffer from the same risks too :D

3 comments:

  1. a must read -- http://www.cracked.com/article_16104_sticks-stools-7-random-objects-sold-as-exercise-machines.html

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  2. Thanks!

    The videos sadly have been removed in that post. But the description was a treat :)

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  3. i got this product for just rupees 1775 from www.excart.in

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