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Old 06-18-2016, 08:16 PM
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Volvo commercial - WTF?

There's a new Volvo commercial on that is very effective. It's getting me to think about it more than I want to. The set-up: Woman driving a Volvo down a road on a spit of land. Behind her is her father? The passenger seats are occupied with what looks to be her brothers (in their 20s). The guy in front scrolls through photos on his Hasselblad - a bride, the old guy raising a toast. The older guy pensively plays with a male wedding band. The woman sees him, punches up a song I don't recognize on the radio. The man touches her shoulder, she smiles at him in the mirror. Down the road they go.

What the fuck is going on? Who does the ring belong to? Why does the guy in the rear with the older guy just stare out the window? How is this supposed to make me want to buy a Volvo? Talk about the commercial, sure. But buy one? Not based on this 60 second bit. Anybody have an amusing or insightful story for this ad?
Old 06-18-2016, 08:40 PM
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This commercial? The description at that site says, "On a quiet ride home from a wedding, the bride's family reminisces together in a shared sentimental silence over photos, memories and a song that brings a smile to the father's face."

Edited to add, the song is, apparently, Every Time the Sun Comes Up by Sharon Van Etten. Not that I recognized it or anything.

Last edited by Dewey Finn; 06-18-2016 at 08:41 PM.
Old 06-18-2016, 08:50 PM
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I've had the same question. I did NOT get the "happy couple just got married and are reminiscing with Dad" vibe. It seemed much more..melancholy. Like the older guy just buried HIS wife, based on the way he was looking at the ring.

Except they don't seem to be in funeral attire.
Old 06-18-2016, 08:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Digital is the new Analog View Post
I've had the same question. I did NOT get the "happy couple just got married and are reminiscing with Dad" vibe. It seemed much more..melancholy. Like the older guy just buried HIS wife, based on the way he was looking at the ring.

Except they don't seem to be in funeral attire.
Volvo-So dependable it will survive the death of it's first owner.
Old 06-19-2016, 12:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Digital is the new Analog View Post
I've had the same question. I did NOT get the "happy couple just got married and are reminiscing with Dad" vibe. It seemed much more..melancholy. Like the older guy just buried HIS wife, based on the way he was looking at the ring.

Except they don't seem to be in funeral attire.
That's not the married couple in the car - it's the bride's family. Driver and old guy are the bride's parents, and the other two are her brothers.
Old 06-19-2016, 12:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Dewey Finn View Post
Typical sentimental swill.

I don't see anything remarkable about this ad, and I find it extremely insulting that jackasses in marketing departments so often think that this kind of imagery and sound would resonate with me--that there is anything at all I would identify with. They really have no clue about me at all.

This is what DVRs were made for, and the higher the FF speed the better.
Old 06-19-2016, 01:30 AM
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Originally Posted by silenus View Post
What the fuck is going on?
After a wedding, the mother of the bride is driving the rest of her family home. The happy couple are not in the car; they're headed to their honeymoon somewhere. We are seeing the other family members who attended the wedding.
Quote:
Who does the ring belong to?
The ring belongs to the father of the bride. His daughter's wedding has reminded him of his own wedding, and he plays with his ring and touches his wife on the shoulder as he reflects on his marriage.
Quote:
Why does the guy in the rear with the older guy just stare out the window?
He's also reflecting on the wedding, and whatever emotions it brought up for him.
Quote:
How is this supposed to make me want to buy a Volvo?
It's supposed to make you associate the Volvo with happy family occasions.
Quote:
Talk about the commercial, sure. But buy one?
That's how this type of branding commercial works. It's not telling you to run out and immediately buy a Volvo; it's telling you to associate the Volvo brand with family and positive emotions.
Quote:
Not based on this 60 second bit. Anybody have an amusing or insightful story for this ad?
I think it's sweet. Even if the marketing doesn't resonate with you, it's almost certainly been tested and found to resonate with some segment of the car-buying population.
Old 06-19-2016, 06:55 AM
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The narrative is made unclear by their refusal to hire an actress who looks older than 42. You don't immediately see her and think, 'matriarch of the family.' It's just some lady you have to figure out.
Old 06-19-2016, 07:15 AM
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If it's the mother driving, why is the father in the back seat? Shouldn't he be in the front seat and the two brothers in the back? The familial arrangement shown in the ad is just weird.
Old 06-19-2016, 08:45 AM
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I assumed from the start that the woman was the mother, and read the whole thing as per SpoilerVirgin's description above.
Old 06-19-2016, 09:01 AM
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Originally Posted by silenus View Post
The guy in front scrolls through photos on his Hasselblad
I wonder how much they paid volvo for that plug. That camera (can) cost more than the car.
Old 06-19-2016, 09:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Digital is the new Analog View Post
I've had the same question. I did NOT get the "happy couple just got married and are reminiscing with Dad" vibe. It seemed much more..melancholy. Like the older guy just buried HIS wife, based on the way he was looking at the ring.

Except they don't seem to be in funeral attire.
Were it not for the camera pictures (young bride who isn't in the car, older man raising a toast looking exactly like he does in the car, so it's not a long time ago) I would have thought much the same.

It IS melancholy...because weddings are bittersweet when it's your kid getting married. There's joy and pride and hopes for their future, there's sadness because the nest is really emptying, there's reminiscing about your past and your journey before they were born and after, there's disbelief that the child you distinctly remember teaching to use a spoon just last...month? only a few years, tops...is a grown up now...

I think they actually did a great job at capturing all those complex emotions with just facial expressions and a single touch.

Whether it's going to ever make me buy a Volvo is doubtful, but I love the artform of very short storytelling that is a well crafted commercial.
Old 06-19-2016, 09:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Terminus Est View Post
If it's the mother driving, why is the father in the back seat? Shouldn't he be in the front seat and the two brothers in the back? The familial arrangement shown in the ad is just weird.
I'm more puzzled by the way he's playing with his ring - unless they just got married, those things don't come off easy. My own father had to have his sawn off before some wrist surgery.
So maybe Volvo Dad has practice removing his ring. He's a serial philanderer, Watson.
Old 06-19-2016, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Terminus Est View Post
If it's the mother driving, why is the father in the back seat? Shouldn't he be in the front seat and the two brothers in the back? The familial arrangement shown in the ad is just weird.
If it's the mother driving, at what age did she have those sons?
Old 06-19-2016, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by scabpicker View Post
If it's the mother driving, at what age did she have those sons?
Exactly. Just one example of how it's pandering to the vanity of mothers with marriage-aged children. This is a classic example of the sappy, pandering visual rhetoric which is common in ads selling products like Volvos. It appeals to vanity.
Old 06-19-2016, 10:49 AM
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According to the extended version, the dude in the front seat isn't even his son. Maybe the groom's brother? Maybe they're all the groom's family giving the widowed father a ride. But then what's with the shoulder squeeze? What's with any of it?
Old 06-19-2016, 10:57 AM
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Originally Posted by scabpicker View Post
If it's the mother driving, at what age did she have those sons?
About 20ish, I'd guess? She looks to be in her early 50s to me. I don't know who the actress is to know for sure.

Also, if you watch the previous ad (in the "extended version" link before this post) - the man isn't as old as he appears, when you hear his voice.

Last edited by WhyNot; 06-19-2016 at 11:02 AM.
Old 06-19-2016, 11:14 AM
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When she started looking at the pictures, I anticipated another Volvo crash safety commercial.
Old 06-19-2016, 11:18 AM
Isaiah 1:15 Screw the NRA.
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She isn't looking at the pictures - the dude in the passenger seat is. And the father of the bride better step up his game if he wants to keep his wife. Guy looks like he's at least 65 and aging rapidly. Shave off that crumb-catcher and hit the gym, dude. Some Grecian Formula wouldn't hurt either.

The narrative and such still makes zero sense, but then, I'm not the demographic Volvo is aiming for with this ad.

OK, after watching the extended version it sorta makes sense. But I shouldn't have to hit YouTube to get the message from your expensive commercial.

Last edited by silenus; 06-19-2016 at 11:22 AM.
Old 06-19-2016, 11:26 AM
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Originally Posted by silenus View Post
She isn't looking at the pictures - the dude in the passenger seat is.
OK, then at six seconds in she is looking at his pecker rather than the pics, establishing the plot justification for the crash.

Let's face it. A Volvo commercial without a crash is just plain pointless.

Last edited by Muffin; 06-19-2016 at 11:31 AM.
Old 06-19-2016, 11:32 AM
Isaiah 1:15 Screw the NRA.
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See? That's what caused the stress in the marriage that he mentions! She's a little ho-wah.
Old 06-19-2016, 11:36 AM
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She and the groom had a secret love child a few years ago. The early onset alzh guy in the back seat never noticed. At least the kidlet knows how to make a decent commercial.
Old 06-19-2016, 12:25 PM
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The extended version makes even less sense. We know he has his own car because the commercial shows him driving it. So why is he hitching a ride to his own daughter's wedding with these other people? If the woman driving is his wife, then why the frak is he relegated to the back seat when the dude in the passenger seat isn't even their son?
Old 06-19-2016, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Terminus Est View Post
The extended version makes even less sense. We know he has his own car because the commercial shows him driving it. So why is he hitching a ride to his own daughter's wedding with these other people? If the woman driving is his wife, then why the frak is he relegated to the back seat when the dude in the passenger seat isn't even their son?
The guy in the front seat is the Best Man.
As for the driving arrangements - who know, maybe he likes the way the Bowers & Wilkins sound system sounds back there.
Old 06-19-2016, 01:08 PM
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This ad has caused me great puzzlement. Thanks for posting about it.

That's one sad and sulky dad. Maybe it's a moody Swedish thing in the melancholy Ingmar Berman way?

This is as bad as the commercial where the Evil BMW maliciously splashed innocent people at a bus stop and the Volve drove by in a very kind and non-splashy manner. I am grateful, though, that it wasn't one of those "people happily chatting and the driver looking at her phone and they're hit by a Mack truck and smooshed into a little tin aluminum Coke can" (this is a strategy fave of both Volvo and Subaru(?)).

Really? What are we supposed to get out of the Vehicle Death Ads? To me, they serve as a negative promotion of the vehicle and even more so a PSA for the dangers of distracted driving. And make me want to buy one of these cars not at all.
Old 06-19-2016, 02:15 PM
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Um... I would've interpreted this without the text as a father goes with his daughter and two sons to a wedding, and he's sad thinking about his dead wife afterwards. I never would've guessed that woman was supposed to be his wife, or the young guys her children.
Old 06-19-2016, 02:45 PM
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I haven't seen it, but from the description, it sounds like maybe they are going to (or coming from) the old guy's wife's funeral.
Old 06-19-2016, 05:03 PM
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Originally Posted by WhyNot View Post
About 20ish, I'd guess? She looks to be in her early 50s to me. I don't know who the actress is to know for sure.

Also, if you watch the previous ad (in the "extended version" link before this post) - the man isn't as old as he appears, when you hear his voice.
Ehh, I would have guessed she was 10-15 years younger than that. I'd guess he's in his early 50's. She didn't read as his wife to me, at any rate.

Either way, if it was easier to interpret, it'd be a better commercial. As it is, that it is a bit confusing is it's only memorable part.

Last edited by scabpicker; 06-19-2016 at 05:04 PM.
Old 06-19-2016, 05:06 PM
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If it was easier to interpret the commercial, we wouldn't be talking about it now nor would we remember it. (Heck, I never even saw the commercial until I started looking for it due to this thread.)
Old 06-19-2016, 05:14 PM
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That's an incredibly insipid ad series. Volvo still exists? I thought they dropped into the fyords years ago due to irrelevance. I can't imagine why this ad would make me want to buy such an archaic device.
Old 06-19-2016, 05:16 PM
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I know what you mean about an archaic device. Automobiles are so last century. I only use a transporter to get around.
Old 06-20-2016, 06:05 PM
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Well if you really want to be confused, go to You Tube and watch the video for Everytime the Sun comes up. I thought maybe there might be some significance associated with that song between the man and his wife. Uh, that would be a big no.
Old 06-20-2016, 06:42 PM
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LMAO!
Old 06-20-2016, 06:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Kobal2 View Post
I'm more puzzled by the way he's playing with his ring - unless they just got married, those things don't come off easy. My own father had to have his sawn off before some wrist surgery.
So maybe Volvo Dad has practice removing his ring. He's a serial philanderer, Watson.
Serial philanderer because his ring comes off easily...give me a break. I'm a Naval Aviator and my ring comes off quite easily as I'm required to take it off every time I fly.
Old 06-21-2016, 07:06 PM
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DUI

I think the old guy is hammered drunk and on his way to rehab because his wife left him again.
Old 06-22-2016, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Digital is the new Analog View Post
I've had the same question. I did NOT get the "happy couple just got married and are reminiscing with Dad" vibe. It seemed much more..melancholy. Like the older guy just buried HIS wife, based on the way he was looking at the ring.

Except they don't seem to be in funeral attire.
That was exactly my interpretation from seeing it at first glance. And that she was pulling up "their song."

I'm at the Volvo dealership right now!
Old 07-20-2016, 09:02 PM
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When I first saw it I figured the woman driver was having an affair with the guy in the passenger seat and they were driving the old man to his execution, or perhaps to an Alzheimer's home. The other guy in the back seat is an accomplice to whatever and is glad the old guy has taken off his wedding ring to save him the trouble of getting it off later. I feel sad and confused every time I see this commercial and would never want my family to own one.
Old 07-20-2016, 11:20 PM
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Well at least Van Damme didn't drop down onto their hood.

Last edited by Muffin; 07-20-2016 at 11:21 PM.
Old 07-21-2016, 02:09 AM
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Well, as a father who's oldest daughter (but still too young) just moved far away, the ad (particularly the extended version) resonated with me. If I was in the market for a new car, I'd be thinking Volvo.
Old 07-21-2016, 02:58 AM
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The extended version makes even less sense. We know he has his own car because the commercial shows him driving it. So why is he hitching a ride to his own daughter's wedding with these other people? If the woman driving is his wife, then why the frak is he relegated to the back seat when the dude in the passenger seat isn't even their son?
I think it's the same car. The family got there earlier with the bride - the father came on his own in the Volvo, pausing for a few minutes at the lighthouse to revise his toast.

Then at the wedding, he drank a little too much, so his wife is driving them home. He's in the back seat because his older son invoked the time-honoured tradition of yelling "Shotgun!" when they returned to the parking lot.
Old 07-21-2016, 08:16 PM
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When she started looking at the pictures, I anticipated another Volvo crash safety commercial.
I wondered if I was the only one who snapped, "Eyes on the road!" when she was eyeballing the camera in the passenger's seat.
Old 07-24-2016, 12:07 PM
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They are actors in a stupid car commercial. It's deliberately vague to make people mention " Volvo". It could be "Chevy" or "Ford" or whatever. It's just a ploy to get people talking about " Volvo's"
Old 07-26-2016, 07:32 PM
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and she never once used her turn signal.
Old 07-26-2016, 08:59 PM
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They are actors in a stupid car commercial. It's deliberately vague to make people mention " Volvo". It could be "Chevy" or "Ford" or whatever. It's just a ploy to get people talking about " Volvo's"
No way! I never would have guessed that the purpose of an advertisement was to get people talking about the product being advertised.
Old 08-18-2016, 05:54 PM
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I REALLY dislike this commercial. Hate the music, sounds like the singer is moaning and needs to be put out of misery. As for the old guy in the back, he looks like a terrorist with a suit on. Volvo, you need to change advertising agencies.
Old 08-18-2016, 06:14 PM
Isaiah 1:15 Screw the NRA.
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No way! I never would have guessed that the purpose of an advertisement was to get people talking about the product being advertised.
Especially since the OP mentioned that very thing! Gosh, stosh - are you always this insightful, or did you just get lucky?
Old 08-18-2016, 06:31 PM
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Originally Posted by rrwcm View Post
I REALLY dislike this commercial. Hate the music, sounds like the singer is moaning and needs to be put out of misery. As for the old guy in the back, he looks like a terrorist with a suit on. Volvo, you need to change advertising agencies.
A well groomed older man in a luxury car commercial "looks like a terrorist"?? Really?

Old 08-19-2016, 08:39 AM
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I did get that it was the mother, but who wears a white lace dress to her daughter's wedding?
Old 08-28-2016, 11:43 AM
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Volvo Commercial

My wife and I have discussed this commercial. Truly, the brand VOLVO does not come to mind when I think about the scenario. If it's the father-of-the-bride looking at his wedding band, why isn't he riding in front with his wife (or ex-wife)? It doesn't make me remember VOLVO at all! It makes me wonder why a company as sophisticated as VOLVO would waste money on a commercial that totally misses the mark.
Old 08-28-2016, 12:15 PM
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I REALLY dislike this commercial. Hate the music, sounds like the singer is moaning and needs to be put out of misery. As for the old guy in the back, he looks like a terrorist with a suit on. Volvo, you need to change advertising agencies.
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Originally Posted by leftfield6 View Post
A well groomed older man in a luxury car commercial "looks like a terrorist"?? Really?

When we were first talking about this thread I was trying to figure out who played the mother and father and ended up on a message board full of comments exactly like the above. I had to look up what 'muzzie' meant. Their problem with the commercial was that a muzzie shouldn't be married to an American (or a hot blonde or something like that).

Found it
"Recently I saw a commercial selling some junk and there was a married couple depicted as a perky white blonde girl married to a slovenly, Arabic-looking guy with a full muzzie beard."

The comments just get worse and worse and worse as the thread goes on.
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