Using Films for Political Campaigns: Good for Politicians, or Bad for the Films?

You might have seen Trump’s MARVELlous campaign video. Ha ha. Not really. Anyway, twitter account ‘Trump War Room’ which claims to be managed by ‘Team Trump’ released a video campaign promoting Trump’s potential re-election in 2020.   

It shows Donald’s face on Thanos’s body, in an (apparently) very famous scene from the Avengers film. I actually saw this film and it still doesn’t make much sense to me. (My attention span only goes so far when Julia Roberts isn’t involved). Basically, the jist is, Donald /Thanos declares that his re-election in 2020 is “inevitable” and then clicks his fingers (because that’s how Thanos kills people apparently). Yep.

Anyway, this lil stunt didn’t go down so well (SHOCK) for a couple of reasons:

1. Thanos is a baddie.

2. SPOILER ALERT: Thanos dies seconds after this scene.

3. People don’t really like when politicians ruin use a film they love to promote their questionable political agendas.

4. Because (some) people consider Trump to be a baddie, too.

So yeah, Trump compares himself to an infamous villain that no one but himself likes, who vows to wipe out all of his enemies. And wants to kill everyone. And then dies. After he’s wiped out by his enemies. No, it wasn’t the Democrats who came up with this. It was actually Trump’s team. I know. 

Now, Trump’s not the only one doing this (that’s the most defence I can give him). Britain’s Donald Trump Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, did something similar the other day. Only it was worse. He tried to associate himself with the iconic classic, “Love Actually”. How DARE he taint the name of one of the GREATEST films of all time. Despicable.

And for obvious and similar reasons, people weren’t happy.

For one, the actual film creators don’t want associations unless they’ve been agreed and paid for. (A lil thing called “copyright infringement” is a bit of an issue, you see).

Jim Starlin (the man who invented Thanos) wasn’t happy at all either, (again, SHOCK). He said, “After my initial feeling of being violated, seeing that pompous fool using my creation to stroke his infantile ego, it finally struck me that the leader of my country and the free world actually enjoys comparing himself to a mass murderer. How sick is that?” I hear ya, Jim.

Plus, when politicians use a film we love to promote themselves, it doesn’t make us like them. It makes us not like the film.

It’s like when brands use songs in their ads, and then play it to death. Any time you hear that song, you get flashbacks to the ad. So while Trump might want people to think of him when they watch Avengers. People don’t want to think about him. Wonder why. Sure Pharrell Williams has already told Trump to stop playing his song “Happy”, because people might think they’re associated. Poor Pharrell.

Saying that, when you’re known as a “controversial” figure, some negative tweets probably won’t phase you. And, doing something like this does get a lot of attention. Do you think someone like Jim Starlin would feel the need to speak out about his outrage to a standard, promo video of Trump? Unlikely. This got the public, celebrities, and news outlets talking. And, they get to annoy their opponents, which is probably a bonus for them.

So, maybe using popular films to promote political campaigns does work. When you’re someone like Trump or Johnston, what have you got to lose anyway?

Just please, PLEASE, leave ‘Love Actually’ alone.

Boris’s Poli-tea-cal Blunder

I was having a wee jook at the news to see what the general craic was with the world, because I normally live in a nice wee bubble where I don’t really know what’s going on. Call me “uninformed” if you want, but ignorance is bliss and all that? Don’t need any negative energy, thank YOU.

Anyway, on my voyage to wisdom, I stumbled across some ‘breaking’ political news story about the general election. Exciting times.

Boris Johnson has caused uproar and disgust across the water (wouldn’t be like him), not for his extreme political views and this whole ‘Brexit’ shenanigans. No. For putting milk in his tea while the teabag’s still in the cup. You can imagine the outcry.

What sort of person have you got as Prime Minister? You let a man who puts milk in his tea with the teabag STILL IN THE CUP lead you? Wild.

So like, we all know this isn’t “news” at all, so why did Sky feel the need to write an article about it? And why did people care so much?

Because, when people don’t like you, they look for any excuse to justify disliking you. “Why do you hate him so much?” “He’s causing everyone severe bother with this Brexit fiasco and potentially disrupting the lives and futures of like, everyone. ” Hmm, seems a bit unreasonable. “He makes tea wrong.” Fair enough. Say no more.

If he was caught on camera making tea normally, would anyone care? Nah. Because when you’ve a bad public image, bad publicity has more of an effect than good does. When people love you, every wee thing you do just makes people love you more. Do something bad, well sure look at all the good you’ve done to cancel it out.

People don’t like you? Every little thing you do is scrutinised, with people just WAITING for you to do something weird or wrong. Do something good? Doesn’t really matter, look at all the other stuff you’ve done. One good deed doesn’t make you a saint. Probably a PR stunt to make people like you anyway.

Boris’s reputation made something as trivial, sorry, majorly important as making tea, become, like, a thing. Like people actually care about it. If Beyoncé made tea weirdly, would you notice? Would you care? Youse would probably all start making tea the way she does.

But, Boris is pretty controversial (to put it as nicely as I can), and some people just love to have a reason to not like him, or support his credibility as a leader of anything. I mean, if you wouldn’t trust him to make you a cup of tea, why would you trust him to make important decisions and run your country?

“The teabag was STILL IN THE CUP”

I can just PICTURE Labour’s next campaign, “We make proper tea, vote for us”. Would be more effective than any political agenda, I reckon.

Why Students Should Skip Uni

Not that you need a reason, do you?

Well lads, big day on the 12th of December – yes it marks a week since the glorious day that is my birthday, but less more importantly, it’s vote day. Yes “vote day” is the political term, I believe. But aye, they called a general election for some reason, which is really random because they’re never normally this time of year. “General election” doesn’t normally fall into my countdown to Christmas.

The 12th of December is also the second last day of uni – yepa.

What have the two got to do with each other? Well, you can’t vote in Armagh if you’re sitting in the Holylands, can you? Most people (hopefully) are registered to vote back in their local area (or “constituency” if you want to be fancy). But chances are, a lot of students won’t be back home on the 12th because they’re living elsewhere for uni.

I know, it’s tempting to just give it a miss and stay in your nice freezing student house rather than go back home to vote, but you really should consider it.

Yeah, you could always register to vote in your student house area but let’s be real, chances of that happening aren’t great, are they? “While lot of effort la.”

Cheesy cliché but you have a voice, so make it count. What other chance do you have to actually make a difference and help decide something? It’s like the one thing normal people can actually play a part in. We’re not trusted to make decisions and and have our thoughts and ideas listened to normally, so this is our yearly shot.

Before you say, “It doesn’t make a difference, it’s only one vote”. Well yes, but one vote times the thousands of people saying that slightly adds up now, doesn’t it?

Let’s not forget the lil 3-year nightmare we’ve been living in. If only more people had’ve voted, maybe things would’ve turned out differently, eh? Eh?

No harm, but you can’t complain about the results of the elections or about decisions that are made if you didn’t vote. True, we can’t do anything about what politicians decide, but we can do something about who gets to make those decisions.

Voting is especially important for students, because we’re the youngest. We have the longest to live with decisions that are made. There isn’t much representation for us young ‘uns, and what we want doesn’t always get much attention. Not voting gives the impression you don’t really care what happens and you trust those bloons in parliament to make the right choices. But if we vote, we can have our chance to show that we actually are important and do care what happens about our future.

Why do I vote?
Because it’s literally the one thing I can do to try to make a difference (apart from recycle). It’s the only control I have. I sign petitions, yes. I go to rallies, yes. But I mightn’t need to if the right people are making the best decisions for me.

I vote because I’m a girl. Because I can. Women couldn’t always vote. Women fought for years for the right to something men got granted onto them simply for having a Y chromosome. People protested, fought and worked for years, not so they could vote, but so we could. I don’t want that to be in vain.

So go home, be warm, number a few wee boxes and be satisfied that hey, you might have actually made a wee difference to the future, how rewarding.

“Please explain your absence in today’s lecture and tutorial.” “Sorry miss, was too busy changing the future.” Sounds kinda badass, doesn’t it?

I mean you could always go to uni then go home and vote because they’re open until like 10pm, but ure don’t pretend you weren’t looking an excuse to miss that lecture anyway.