The You of A?

Senior WalkI'm going to let everyone in on a big secret – I'm from Arkansas.

I know it's shocking, but you're just going to have to get over that for now, because I have something else I want to say – I went to the University of Arkansas.

Yes, it's true. Now, you're probably thinking one of the following:

  1. But Seth, you're so smart, how is that possible?
  2. Ahhhhhh! That explains a lot.
  3. Why in the heck are you telling me this?

I'll skip the first two and go straight to the third. The reason I tell you this is because I love my state and I love the University of Arkansas. When I can, I go back to see my old professors and talk to journalism classes. When I'm in town, I try to go to sporting events (and buy snacks). When I'm not in town, I watch the games on TV or on the internet.

Whenever there's a college sporting event on TV, each school usually plays a commercial about themselves. This year, the University of Arkansas debuted a new commercial about the Senior Walk – a series of sidewalks that displays the names of all who ever graduated at Arkansas (etched into the concrete). It's a great tradition that the school has and it's something my family can share. My grandfather's name is there, my father's name is there and my name is there.

Here's the commercial:

For all the love I like to give the University, and while the idea of this commercial is spot on, everyone knows that one guy isn't responsible for chiseling in the names of everyone who graduated. I mean, when the camera pulls back to "reveal" what the guy was doing (the 0:13 mark), you can clearly see the squares around each letter that was PRESSED into the sidewalk (the letters are actually placed and pressed by machine called Senior Sand Hog). If you're going to fake this, why not show the names near the base of Old Main where they used to be hand-written?

I know, it's splitting hairs, but it just doesn't scream authentic when the camera bounces at :09 because the slab of concrete is probably in a studio somewhere.

I love the University of Arkansas and I love the idea of the spot, I just think there are a few things that it could've done better.

+ original post date: November 20, 2011 08:56 AM
+ categories: Advertising


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