I have a confession.
Although I spent five years studying film, I'm not and never have been a film buff. This disparity has probably kept me out of the public world of film and tv more than any other secret.
How did this happen?
My first film appreciation class was one of those filler courses I'd chosen to meet some sort of requirement. I had no intention of majoring in the discipline, nor its sister, Media/Communications. I'd originally come to school to be a Social Work major then realized I was simply interested in communicating with people. And when the first film class absolutely hooked me in, I just had to add a second major to my college repertoire. For me, it wasn't about the actors or the lines, but about the representation of life, the reflection of the culture projected onto a big screen. I wanted to learn all the rules, then learn how great directors broke them one by one. I was not disappointed.
So here I am, years later, blogging about commercials. It's because the tiny TV ads function in the same way as major filmworks. As our shortest films, they represent a time and place in our cultural atmosphere and attempt to reflect who and what we are as a group. Commercials do that more efficiently than any other medium, but require all of the same skills as filmmaking. And I don't have to memorize the lines or the actors, but remain thankful to those of you who do so, and continue to write about them.