The Disproportion Hook: Apple, “Color Flood” (2018)

A contemporary smartphone is about six inches high and three inches wide. It has a screen showing colored images. The visual differences between phone screens are subtle, if noticeable at all.

The new (at time of writing) iPhone XR costs $750, and the sales pitch for it is: Liquid Retina display!

With the happy indulgence of the viewing public, Apple will make a mountain ad for a molehill consumer decision, gleefully answering our question: How much trouble can one ad go to to embellish a tiny talking point?

In “Color Flood” there appear to be hundreds of custom-suited stunt performers rampaging over acres of urban landscape. There may be more performers than there are dollars required to buy the phone.

And they do it stylishly, too. Kudos to the creative team.

And it makes sense to us that we should be entertained and solicited in this way, and our wallets tapped. Ah, peacetime! Don’t knock it!

About Steve Smith

Emeritus Professor of Philosophy & Religious Studies at Millsaps College
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