This commercial for HSBC aired last night during, appropriately, the CBS Evening News. It makes absolutely zero sense whatsoever. NONE:

Who is Henry? Her boyfriend? Her dad? Her brother? Did he use his HSBC atm card to bail her out, is that what the point sort of is? Why is there a bank commercial that takes place in a haunting post-apocalyptic wasteland? I looked it up on YouTube, and apparently this commercial is a very shitty cut up version of this, which also has seemingly nothing to do with banks, but crams in as many creepy-looking people and moments of fear as possible:

(The song is by Joanna Newsom, btw.) The spelling of “recognise” at the end might be a hint that this version was intended for the UK or Canada, but there’s no excuse for whatever it was that aired during the news last night. Even if I’m missing something and there’s more of an explanation for this (an ongoing series, for example) now might be the time for banks to nix commercials that can best be described as frightening, dark, and confusing. WTF, HSBC? It’s like this was pitched as “The Road: The Bank Commercial: Now.”

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Comments (9)
  1. :36 Very .gif-able bear costume v. policeman fight. Can you also make a videogum promise to bring us all the bear costume news that’s fit to blog?

    • holy shit! I was wondering why I kept thinking of The Wicker Man while watching this!!

      • You were probably just thinking of the The Wicker Man because it’s a film with great cultural, historical and aesthetic significance. Oh yeah, you didn’t hear? It’s up for the National Film Registry. Or Rock Hall of Fame, I forget.

        Also, the fact that my suggested .gif came into reality (cyberreality?) makes this a milestone in my life. E-Scrapbooking this.

    • you know, i’ve been meaning to get around building a tool that makes it easy to turn tiny clips from youtube into animated gifs, and this happened to be the exact right argument for finally doing it on a lazy sunday night:

  2. I don’t know why they used a Joanna Newsom song. Everyone know she HATES trees, right?

  3. …and then they go home to hate-fuck? I think that as a “value,” hate-fucking is more universal than HSBC understands.

  4. OMG! Thank you Lindsay, thank you. This commercial has been airing all week and everytime it’s on and I mean everytime, I say I don’t get it. I feel validated that you don’t get it either. Thank you

  5. Ashley  |   Posted on Sep 27th, 2008 +1

    1. Too few commercials are brave enough to feature hippie beatdowns.
    2. Joanna Newsom is a sign of the apocalypse.
    3. Why did I get all teary-eyed at the end? Goddamn their beautiful love.

  6. MrsToniLydman  |   Posted on Oct 30th, 2008 0

    HFG and Lindsay…

    i hear ya there, what does this commercial have to do with hsbc?

    i’m watching the hockey game, and I keep seeing it.. it has nothing to do with banks or anything….


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