Wednesday, September 27, 2006
So Stephen Kuusisto and Wheelchair Dancer have weighed in so far about the new "Accident" ad from Mac, in which the PC played by John Hodgman is seen in a wheelchair, with two arms and a leg in casts, explaining that someone tripped over his power cord. (There's a still shown at right; the video version is at YouTube.) It's meant to point out that Macs have a magnetic cord attachment that easily detaches when tugged. But...hmmm. They're still playing with the wheelchair = broken cliche. I agree with Wheelchair Dancer that they're trying really hard to emphasize the "injury," not the "disability"--thus the giant plaster casts. But still.
Beth Haller pointed out an alternative in 2001: An award-winning Cingular Wireless ad aired during the Superbowl that year featuring Dan Keplinger, an artist who uses a wheelchair. There, the message was about self-expression, changing attitudes, adjusting expectations upward, and embracing the new. It can be done.