To begin, here is the ad that I will be referencing, as well as lyrics -unabridged- to the original song that is played in the background:
From here we will look at the ad with three questions. One, what is the ad displaying about the product? Two, how does the ad use the backdrop to relate to many types of customers? Three, how does the individual in the ad interact with the music and how should that make us feel?
The first question is answerable in a very simple way. The product shows us the first and foremost the wireless charging capabilities as well as the portability of the ear-buds. The main supposition that the ad is making, is to demonstrate that the ear-buds will stay in your eyes regardless of one’s movements. This is seen transparently when one watches the actor dance on the side of the wall, upside down, and at first upright with spinning as well.
The second question requires more analysis but is still important to note.
The scenes are as follows:
Opening in district that looks city, note when he starts walking in the beginning seen the manhole is not visible in the opening shot. This appeals to both a European audience (what the scene in the beginning evokes) and an American city dweller. We see him look in at diners at a nice diner that seems out of place from the previous cut. This would be those that are uncultured and wealthy, that scene is sharply contrasted to those under the actor dancing on the theater lights. Those individuals would represent the cultured and wealthy. We see the actor dancing on a bald eagle, a symbol of individualism sharply complemented when we see the fact that the actor is the only one dancing and (presaging my third point) the parts of the lyrics that have been excluded are the parts that speak about people dancing together.
The third question requires the highest level of analysis and pulling together of all the above factors.
It appears that Apple is simultaneously making the viewer feel a desire for this individualized alternative reality that is brought about by the music. However, we must realize that it is not the music that generates this alternate reality. Why? The music repeats “Down etc.” all while the actor is not down on the ground. Rather, he defies what the word “down” means. Instead, the viewer is subconsciously meant to understand that this alternative reality is from the Apple Airpods, see the text at the end: “AirPods on iPhone 7 | practically magic.” This message is also coupled with a point about the brand when we see the Apple logo and “Down” is repeated one last time. The ad not only tells us to believe that the Airpods are magical but that Apple itself is the music and the vehicle that delivers the mechanisms for its alternate reality in the form of products. It is also important to note that at one point during the ad the actor does wish to be “down.” It is when he is at the edge of the lights and sees that if he kept going he would go up into the stars. This idea would fall in line with the other lyrics that were excluded from the original song, those about risk taking. The ad supports an identity for someone that is individualistic, anti-risk, and first and foremost believes that an alternative -potentially better to some- reality can be bought with Apple products.
Written on an HP.