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Hands and a Foot

July 25, 2015

My wife and I marked our 10-year wedding anniversary this week, so I wanted to put up this post. It’s about a new toenail fungal medicine called Jublia. More specifically, it’s about this commercial for Jublia:

Jublia Commercial

If you didn’t click the link, the commercial shows an animated foot playing tennis against the words “Toenail Fungus” in block letters. Let’s review all of the problems I have with this commercial:

  • First, why does the foot have hands? “To grip the racket, you big dummy!” is what you’re probably thinking. But its Toenail Fungus opponent doesn’t have hands. Why does only the foot have hands? If Toenail Fungus doesn’t need hands to play tennis, what special qualities does the foot lack that require it to have two floating, disembodied hands? And why are the hands wearing purple rubber gloves? Is that allowed in tennis? Maybe only on the pro-am circuit?
  • Second, what sort of game is this they’re playing? At no point does the foot ever follow the rules of tennis. It starts by serving the ball not at the opposite side of the court, but rather directly at its opponent. It hits Toenail Fungus square in the gut! This is followed by a volley in which the foot repeatedly hammers the ball against the opponent. Were this tactic to be used on an actual tennis court, it would not result in a victory. Why not show the foot beating Toenail Fungus per the game of tennis?
  • Next, the foot is giddy and smiling throughout the commercial. (The big toe has a face.) Does it not know that it has no idea how to play tennis? Or is it taking some kind of sadistic pleasure in purposefully breaking the rules, just to physically damage its opponent? Does this indicate that you should also take a Xanax with Jublia?
  • Additionally to the point of the foot’s humanistic depiction, why is it wearing a visor? Did the ad agency think we wouldn’t take the foot seriously as a tennis player if it merely had the face, hands and racket involved?
  • The stadium is shown as being packed with lively fans. I’m going to assume the people there had no idea about the match they were about to see. I mean, if someone told those folks, “Hey, let’s go watch a tennis match!” and then they asked who was playing, and were told, “Just a disembodied foot versus some toenail fungus,” and they still showed up in droves? I am really not OK with that kind of world. On the other hand, if they didn’t know who was playing ahead of time, but still stayed to watch a foot versus a fungus, I’m probably even less comfortable with that.
  • Finally, considering that the foot is depicted as being infected with toenail fungus itself in the commercial, why not show it being gradually cured over the course of the ad? The foot looks just as bad at the end as it does at the beginning!

Anyway, I wanted to make sure everyone was aware of these seeming discrepancies and confusing plot points in this commercial. After all, if you can’t trust a drug maker to make an accurate cartoon about an anthropomorphic foot playing tennis, how is it supposed to cure whatever it is that ails you? Also, Happy Anniversary, honey!

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