Known Johnson

July 12, 2006

Taylor Hicks and the Chinese water torture Ford commercial

Filed under: Music,TV — Tom @ 9:23 am

I’m not a fan of American Idol by any means, but I thought Taylor Hicks was a breath of fresh air just because he wasn’t one of the wailing, caterwauling, warbling, overemotive divas that the show is usually responsible for churning out (this includes the big dude who won a while back whose name I completely forget because he’s done absolutely nothing since winning, while the little pixie Clay Aiken that came in second actually had an entire career since then.) Now, however, thanks to Ford’s ambush marketing campaign, I am eagerly awaiting the day when Taylor Hicks completely disappears.

I almost said “dies” there in place of “completely disappears,” and I have to admit that I really have said it to Alissa and friends numerous times, but I just realized that if he died he’d immediately become a legend and that’s the last thing I want to have happen to Taylor Hicks. No, what I want to have happen to Taylor Hicks because of Ford’s incessant, unstoppable, you-can’t-escape-it ad campaign is for every one of those people who feverishly dialed in week after week to support him or anyone associated with this show to just grow so sick of him that they can’t take it anymore and hopefully they’ll never buy a Ford because of it. Or a Taylor Hicks album.

In case you somehow haven’t seen it – lucky you – the commercial is just Taylor Hicks doing his white-man soul on top of some kind of circular, glowing-blue stage to some song I take it is called “Possibilities.” And there’s some Ford-related stuff in there, too, but following a trend in modern advertising, I truly cannot say what product is actually being advertised other than Ford itself. Brilliant marketing, guys, brilliant. And it plays in nearly every commercial break on every major network, even on many cable networks, and sometimes plays more than once in each commercial break. Its repetitiveness is Chinese water torture – you know it’s coming, you just don’t know exactly when.

I do know this, however: when I hear the opening salvo of horns and drums, I seek the remote control. I cannot take hearing more than a moment of this weak, limp “soul” song anymore. If this song is on Taylor Hicks’ first album, I cannot see how anyone will ever be able to actually stomach listening to it ever again – it has forever been stamped by the 30 seconds of this Ford commercial as a jingle.

Ford has so saturated the airwaves with this ad there is sure to be a backlash, and that backlash will most likely have its most prominent effect on Hicks himself, not Ford. At this point, I don’t care. And Ford doesn’t either – the commercial likely got a lot of viewers to stick around for at least the first few dozen airings because they had to get their groove on to the generic soul while Ford pounded its message into their skulls (which is, apparently, nothing less subtle than, “FORD FORD FORD FORD FORD FORD!”)

This commercial is here to stay for a good long time, I fear, with no abatement of its “every commercial break” schedule in sight. I just wish, if we have to see it so often, it could have been another American Idol – Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood, perhaps. At least they’re cute.

Oh, and Chrysler/Plymouth/Jeep’s Dr. Z: watch out. You’re next. I’m getting real sick of you, too.

You really owe it to yourself to jump over to this post on Blogcritics and scroll down to the comments. Very entertaining – the Soul Patrol has jumped all over this one and they have absolutely no sense of humor whatsoever.

Those of you hopping over here to say hello and point out that the “little pixie” Clay is 6’1″ tall, thank you, but my point still stands – the dude looks like a little pixie regardless of height.



  1. “while the little pixie Clay Aiken that came in second actually had an entire career since then”

    You do know Clay Aiken is 6’1″ right?

    Comment by Caitydid — July 12, 2006 @ 11:43 am | Reply

  2. is 6′ 1″. FYI.

    Comment by Bets Glenn — July 12, 2006 @ 11:48 am | Reply

  3. “little pixie” Clay Aiken is six foot one. FYI.

    Comment by Bets Glenn — July 12, 2006 @ 11:49 am | Reply

  4. That commercial makes me want to vomit. I am in complete agreement with you.

    Comment by Chris — July 12, 2006 @ 12:25 pm | Reply

  5. Get a life Tom and post something meaningful. Maybe you’re secretly in love with Taylor and want to drive around in a Mustang with him… ๐Ÿ™‚

    Comment by Christy — July 12, 2006 @ 2:43 pm | Reply

  6. And this is Taylor Hicks’ fault how?

    I am personally looking forward to what he can accomplish without all the pulling of puppet strings from AI and Ford (sponsor of AI and Hicks didn’t have a choice). He’s a talent and his own music is excellent.

    Have a good one.


    Comment by Deb — July 12, 2006 @ 5:05 pm | Reply

  7. Hey, Tom, get a grip! You do realize the poor guy has zero control over how often this thing is played? Also, you will be delighted to hear that it is only running through the end of this month so you won’t be so hugely uncomfortable for much longer. I’m a diehard – diehard, I tell ya! – Taylor Hicks fan, and I think your article is screamingly funny. Also, I heard of this blog in the first place from a friend who posted that she has printed it out for her scrapbook because she found it hilarious and she can use the laugh. So, you see, we Soul Patrollers DO have a sense of humor, even if it is as skewed as yours.

    For the record, I love, love, love the commercial and when I hear the first bars, I go running to the TV from wherever I am just to see it one. more. time. My only regret is that it usually is the short version that’s being aired. Another Soul Patroller has even DVDed it for me so I can watch ad infinitum.

    Your original instincts were the right ones – Taylor IS refreshing. Deep down you know that’s true. He truly is all about the music. One of the things I love about him is that he does not use sex to sell, which is original in itself these days. And he is MUCH cuter than Kelly or Carrie! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Comment by Carole — July 12, 2006 @ 5:59 pm | Reply

  8. Do you really think a Ford commercial JINGLE will be on his album? You want to know why I think you wrote this…so that you would get attention…After all, before writing about Taylor Hicks, I didn’t even know who you were, neither did the soul patrollers, so we have no problem saying that unless you write about him again, we’ll still have no idea who you are.

    Comment by asil — July 12, 2006 @ 8:20 pm | Reply

  9. Well, I’m glad at least one of you has a sense of humor, Carole. Maybe you can pass along the message to the other Soul Patrol militia that it’s okay to just laugh a little – you have to admit this stupid commercial is on way, WAY too often. Anyone taking this piece seriously is in need of a humor transplant.

    Asil, as flattered as I am that you now “know” about my site, I’m absolutely certain that in a couple of days it will be as easily forgotten as it was before I published this piece this morning. It truly wasn’t written with any intent to get attention – in fact, I’m rather stunned at the amount of attention it’s receiving here and on I wrote this purely to entertain myself and the small bunch of other people who do regularly stop by to read this site. If some of you come back for more, great! I’m not counting on it, however!

    Oh, and yes, Asil, I did a little research and read that this song, “Possibilities,” is not a jingle but a song on Taylor’s album. Sorry to break it to you.

    Comment by Tom — July 12, 2006 @ 9:33 pm | Reply

  10. Tom: when all the dust settles and the Soul Patrol goes back to whatever it is they normally do, I’ll still be reading your site, as will all of us with a sense of humor and adventurous musical tastes.

    Keep up the good work. And congratulations on the increased site traffic!

    Comment by Chris — July 13, 2006 @ 6:54 am | Reply

  11. Tom: Taylor Hicks has more talent in one little finger than you do in your little brain and your useless body. Nauseating…that’s what I would call your opinion. I love Taylor and FORD! And Clay…talented to the nth, Ruben…richer and talented than you will ever be….get a life guy….quit being a wannabe.

    Comment by Carol — July 13, 2006 @ 12:19 pm | Reply

  12. Tom: I was almost diappointed that I stumbled onto your article. Super B_tch mode. Are the participants on the Idol that darn important that you waste your brain neurons, and adding injury to insult, you write an ENTIRE article about just that ?….what a loser. The Idol is for entertainment purposes. Turn the channel for Godsake…or do you have a personal Nielsen box ? Geez !

    Perhaps next time you’ll write an added value article about what we can do about the skyrocketing cost of natural resouces – gasoline, or even what readers can collective do to deal with the heck of a hole we have in the ozone. Or maybe even what Ford can do about the extensive job lose within their ranks…

    You have the power of an audience and you waste it on complaining about Ford commercial choice and Taylor Hicks. Some writer should be band from writing…because of their inability to know what to write.

    But I am sure you remember the one only part about the constitution which allows you to write such a lame article.

    Best Wishes

    Comment by MP — July 13, 2006 @ 12:20 pm | Reply

  13. I’m pretty sure I can use exactly the same logic as all of you who are berating me for using my time and skills to write this little piece to say that instead of bashing me for writing something, why aren’t all of you out there doing something good for mankind instead of getting upset about an American Idol contestant?

    Maybe some of you could take a few minutes to look at the bigger picture of what I was really writing about before knee-jerk reacting because you somehow felt insulted for precious Taylor Hicks. First off, so what? I don’t like Taylor. Why not read around my site and see what I DO like? Maybe I can even direct you to some music that will completely blow Taylor Hicks out of your mind.

    Second, read back, think, and look at what’s really at the heart of this piece. There’s more to it than just Taylor Hicks and Ford. I hinted at it pretty obviously a couple of times. It’s not all that hard to figure out. I’m not going to point it out – you have to find it for yourself. What’s hilarious about this is that you’re all so blindly allegiant to your hero that you’re not even stopping to really read the piece – you’re just reacting because you feel some sense of insult FOR Taylor.

    Comment by Tom — July 13, 2006 @ 1:29 pm | Reply

  14. I liked this part of your article.
    Quote: Iโ€™m not a fan of American Idol by any means, but I thought Taylor Hicks was a breath of fresh air just because he wasnโ€™t one of the wailing, caterwauling, warbling, overemotive divas that the show is usually responsible for churning out.

    Thanks! I’ll have to use that quote oneday. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Comment by CABlondi — July 14, 2006 @ 12:49 am | Reply

  15. Good Lord, these people need to get out of the house more often.

    Luckily I don’t suffer from Taylor Hicks Ford Commercial Syndrome (THFCS) because I only watch shows that I have Tivo’d.

    Comment by Bekah — July 19, 2006 @ 12:34 pm | Reply

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