May 31, 2022

This got me: the infuriating pizza pop

A line of dominos (the tiles, not the pizza)

There’s an advert that is getting on my wick. It’s twisting my melon. It’s doing my noggin in.

I don’t want to mention the brand because I don’t want to give them clicks. It’s a pizza company. They’re named after the table-top game in which you link together spotted tiles. You know the one. Stand the tiles vertically then watch them fall over one after another. Yes. That pizza company.

The advert appears when I watch YouTube on my mobile phone, or on any device that hasn’t got an ad-blocker. It’s maybe only ten seconds long, but it’s a lot. A LOT. I’d embed it for you, but I can’t find it on YouTube. Let me describe it.

It leads with rhythmic music: staccato percussion that sounds like a woodblock pinball machine. Cue a meaningless montage of pizza images. Once the rhythm has looped, it adds on more percussion, as if a drum kit is trying to hump another drum kit. More meaningless images. As it reaches its conclusion, it coalesces into an urgent tick-tick-tick climax.

And then it commits a cardinal sin.

The final sound is meant to be one last percussive hurrah, like the closing bwoom in the Countdown clock music. The sound is someone popping their mouth with a finger. Like you do when you’re imitating a balloon pop. Puffed cheek, pursed lips, finger in and *pop*. Except the finger-pop is not in time. It comes in slightly early, just before the 1-beat of the 4/4 rhythm. It’s meant to sound offbeat and syncopated, but it just sounds like a mistake. Jarring enough for me to vomit up my pizza.

I know commercials are meant to be in-your-face. And this kind of straight-jacket techno is not unusual in idents. There’s another advert that’s meant to feel trip-hoppy but it just sounds like someone’s copied-and-pasted from sample pack. An audio shrug. I get it. Remember the Babylon Zoo advert disappointment in which the glorious spacy techno turned out to be indie sludge? Electronic music succumbed to capitalism a long time ago.

But this ad is infuriating. It has me jabbing the ‘skip’ button in the same way I dive for the tuning button whenever the Archers theme tune comes on. Not that I listen to Radio 4 much anymore: I’m a podcast earwigger because I’m cool and trendy.

I’m also annoyed at their “We got this” slogan. While recognising the importance of not being prescriptive about grammar, especially when it comes to representing idioms from minority cultures, this is just dumb. That phrase is nothing to do with pizza or what they do as a company. It’s ad execs throwing a scrabble set into a toilet bowl and apple-bobbing for the fewest letters possible.

I’m also annoyed that I’ve ordered so much pizza, I’m being bombarded with pizza adverts left, right, centre and everywhere else. Serves me right for accepting cookies. Computer cookies, that is. The last thing I need after a pizza is even more dietary trash.

So there you go. My rant about an advert. This blog provides cutting edge content. Next up, I’m going to write a diatribe about people commenting on YouTube vid***POP***

See? It’s annoying, isn’t it.