The holidays are here, which means stores are once again setting up their display fronts to attract shoppers and brands to air wholesome commercials during Sunday football games.
One of those companies is Amazon: its holiday commercial, starring an array of smiling boxes and rushed customers who are trying to finish their shopping, tries for all the quaintness of a Folgers ad. It’s a celebration of time spent with loved ones and friends, but there’s also something a little strange and off-putting about it. Maybe it’s that everyone seems a little too cheery about using Amazon during the holidays, which anyone will tell you isn’t exactly a walk through the park.
Luckily, one Twitter user, Omar Najam, thought to adjust the ad with a more appropriate tune, replacing its jollier original score with the theme from Captain America: The Winter Soldier (which is arguably one of the best films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe).
The theme perfectly captures the current feeling of existential dread that surrounds Amazon. The e-commerce giant has come under scrutiny in the past few weeks for its decision to open its HQ2 locations in Queens, New York, and Washington, DC. Now, with the help of dissonant horns and lingering tones, Amazon becomes a supervillain, a corporation run by Lex Luthor or Hydra with world domination in mind. It’s so ominous and dreadful — the smile logos, once animated to sing along, now appear to be hypnotizing their recipients or just screaming for mercy — that it could act as a one-minute pitch for a Black Mirror episode or a preview for a new entry in Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams (which, ironically, is produced by Amazon Studios).
The holiday season always means being inundated with commercials from major companies like Amazon, Apple, and Best Buy that try to rake in as many sales as possible. Thankfully, as we descend into these dark times, more creative minds like Najam’s give these commercials a relatable spin, enriching our lives and making each ad a bit more bearable.