‘Portly old dweeb’ versus ‘smug little twit’

Over at Slate, Seth Stevenson finally weighs in on the new Apple ads, and he doesn’t like them much. “My problem with these ads begins with the casting,” he writes. “As the Mac character, Justin Long (who was in the forgettable movie Dodgeball and the forgettabler TV show Ed) is just the sort of unshaven, hoodie-wearing, hands-in-pockets hipster we’ve always imagined when picturing a Mac enthusiast. He’s perfect. Too perfect. It’s like Apple is parodying its own image while also cementing it.” Stevenson prefers the other actor, John Hodgman. He explains: “The ads pose a seemingly obvious question—would you rather be the laid-back young dude or the portly old dweeb?—but I found myself consistently giving the ‘wrong’ answer: I’d much sooner associate myself with Hodgman than with Long.” Stevenson, a PC user, says the ads give him little reason to switch. Maybe Apple should bring back Ellen Feiss, the Benadryl-afflicted star of that old “Switchers” ad. No could could accuse her of being a “smug little twit.”

—Posted by Tim Nudd