At long last, a blip on the brain-dead Obama ad team’s EEG meter. There’s enough sinister “Washington fat cat” voiceover to limit the backfire potential here in reminding viewers of McCain’s experience (just like there was enough snark in McCain’s celebrity ad to limit the backfire in reminding viewers how popular Obama is), but if you’re Team Barry, why do you want to keep this meme alive? Thanks to the exposure of McCain’s ad and Paris Hilton’s ad, and of course to ill-advised fundraisers like this, the “celebrity” label now points squarely at one candidate. To erase the connotation at this point would require an acid scrub, something cutting and memorable in its own right, and this just ain’t.
If they want to coopt the term, they’d be better off embracing it and turning the tables: Get a bunch of celebrities together (comedians preferably to blunt the sense of self-importance), have them start the ad by goofing on the idea of anyone caring what a celebrity would think, then have them say, “but for what it’s worth, here’s why I’m voting for Barack Obama” followed by listing some of his policy proposals. Tom Hanks did a freelance version of this idea a few months ago and it worked, but only because his own ego is perceived as being conspicuously less grandiose than most of Hollywood. The trick would be in finding other “non-celeb celebs” like that who aren’t off-puttingly attractive, vain, or shrill about their politics. Exit question: Why’d it take them so long after McCain’s ad to come back with this? Did they laugh off the “celebrity” dig initially only to find per recent polls that it was working? Or are they just, you know, brain dead?