NFL Ad Report
Don't Fall for Revisionist FAKE History
An ad firm had the courage to film automotive History. Then they took it back.
n early October of this year, an American advertising firm finally had the courage to give the American public what it had long desired and greatly deserved: a faithful motion picture telling of the history of the lives of Horace and John Dodge. It aired on American television for free, I assume because the film's truthfulness and incredible accuracy made it an immediate national treasure. In the spirit of those free screenings, I offer it to you here:
For those of you unfamiliar with the subtleties of the cinema, allow me to point out a few of the crucial qualities that this advertisement communicates as being central to our understanding of the Dodge brothers and, by extension, the Dodge brand.
As the opening images of Horace and John clearly establish, the Dodge brothers are super rich and absolutely slack-jaw admired by other super rich fellows and/or their dames. As we know from rock-solid sources of historical information, the Dodge brothers broke from Ford in 1914, and both were dead by the end of 1920. The images in this commercial, then, establish something little known but crucial to understand when it comes to the Dodge brothers' innovations. You had been led to understand that the Jazz Age and flapper fashion were in large part a reaction to the establishment of American Prohibition in 1920? Finally, a film sets the historical record straight: the Dodge bros. were having wild Jazz Age parties, complete with flappers, a full decade before anyone else. "Great War?" they said. "What Great War? We're too busy admiring our Model 30 ice sculpture and shoving firecrackers into pigs to worry about any Great War! We just invented flappers, by the way. Here. Tonight. Don't tell anyone. The rest of the country won't have them until it makes sense in a social historical way. Which we predate and defy."
"John went on to hold office," the Narrator of Truth reveals. "Horace supported the orchestra. They raced yachts." This is one-percenter shit all the way, baby. The Dodge brothers were tossed on logo-emblazoned tarps, they swung from chandeliers. I admire the bold vision here, the willingness to tell it like it is: the Dodge brothers destroy property, break glassware, and laugh through the whole thing—these were great, great, historic douchebags. Champagne-guzzling, backslapping, American douchebags.
"A hundred years later, this is how their spirit lives on." Cue a sportscar peeling out of a parking lot for no reason, bystanders nearby.
I don't know about you, but I love it when someone peels out of a parking lot for no reason, spraying up dirt and rock shrapnel that can seriously injure people standing nearby. It's American.
Imagine my historical outrage, then, when the following piece of revisionist pap inexplicably began airing just a few weeks later:
The earth-and-leather hues of sobriety and labor? Images of steam, of work. A ridiculous, preposterous shot of the Dodge brothers offering workers drinks. The Dodge brothers consorting with workers!
This never happened. It never happened because it was not in the primary historical document. By which I mean the October ad.
And so our nation's history is sullied again. I can well imagine the heinous shenanigans that brought this farce before us. Some lily-livered feels-feeling namby-pamby who can't handle the Rayndian truth of great men and their great laughing destructiveness came to Dodge complaining about how aligning the brand with total douchebaggery—its cultural heritage—was possibly going to be too aggressive—too real, I say—for the bleeding-heart American public. And so what was foisted upon us was an immediate revisionist fake Dodge brothers history that I, as an intellectual who cares about such things, reject as false. The primary source aired in October. The November pseudo-history's swerve away from admirable arrogance, thoughtless hedonism, and some sort of time travel can be only the result of nefarious market analysis and demographic hand-wringing hoo-haw.
So the weak citizens of our weak republic cried foul at the daring lives of the true (October) Dodge brothers? They couldn't handle tuxedos and swagger, bowties and babes? Men make cars, friends. And then they make money—lots of it. And then they spend that money on champagne pyramids and illustrative ice sculptures and they bend time to bring flapper dames from the twenties to their teens party, at which they rip shit up and peel out, and that's the way it its. That's life, suckers.
What kind of country is this in which the true (October) history of the Dodge brothers didn't work and required immediate revision? What has become of the super rich yacht-owning Dodge drivers? Did they not come to the defense of the sanctity of (October) American automotive history?
I am ashamed. I am disappointed. And I greatly question a nation in which, when a brand aligns itself with wasteful spending, douchebaggery, and yacht-owning, the people do not respond with praise and worship.
I reject November's revisionist history of the Dodge brothers, brothers. Are you with me? If so, join me on my yacht. I'll be dancing with the flappers. Let's guzzle bubbly and break shit.
Pete Tothero works in finance but is somehow also this magazine’s Sports Editor. In September he wrote about GE's Beep Boy. He is not contractually obligated to have watched advertisements he later knowingly references.