What’s up Unmitigates?

Did you happen to check out Sen. Obama’s “Obamercial” last night? I have to admit, I have my doubts on how effective it was. Outside of presidential debates and State of the Union addresses, using primetime slots for politics on non-political stations is usually pretty pointless. If the intention of his segment was to further motivate his Amen Corner, mission accomplished. If it was intended to lift the cloud of speculation from “undecided” and Independent voters, the jury is still out.

Regardless of the outcome of the segment, I have to at least recognize how absolutely well done it was. For starters, I can’t say enough about the top notch production value. Even if you paid little or no attention to the substance in the segment, it at least had a visually aesthetic look. The lighting, the camera work, the backgrounds, and the music all came together to capture the viewer’s attention. But, let’s be real here: Obama’s charisma also made the segment attention grabbing. Good cimematography doesn’t always make a candidate appealing. Case in point:

What was also pretty well done in the segment was shifting the attention away from Sen. Obama and more to the average person (the real Joe’s out there). Though the stories were definitely scripted (I suspect the Obama camp tried to find some of the most depressing stories they could find), there was still a special hurt that I had for the people showcased. Their stories could’ve have easily been my story. Your story. Rather than formulating policy around fictional characters, Obama used real people with real struggles. Further, he didn’t have to spend any time peddling his policy on the audience considering that – if true – most polls suggest people’s trust already lies in him more than McCain in handling critical issues.

What also caught my attention was the delicate and subtle way Sen. Obama connected with the average person. He didn’t come across as the elitist which the nuts on the right like to portray. He showed the world who he really is: a child from a single parent, a grandson of people from the “Greatest Generation”, and a father who reads Harry Potter books with his children. In the office setting, I couldn’t help but think that Obama also had a certain…presidential look to him. Looking cool, collected, and sophisticated, his portrayal in this segment was undoubtedly a far stretch from the “terrorist” label people on the right try to tag on him. To this effect, the segment was brilliant and touching. Then again, for the supporters, Obama had us at “Hello.” For independent voters or folks who generally have an ax to grind, we’ll have to wait and see how effective it was. 

Whatever the case, I have to give Obama kudos for having the gumption to try this. Suddenly, I don’t feel like my campaign contributions have been a waste.