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Expendable Copy

The idea is that copy, good copy, encourages you to try or buy a product or service.  In the case of a film, it should encourage you to see the film.  Or at least this is what I used to believe.  The problem is, I’ve been proven wrong.  In fact, I’ve been proven horribly wrong.

It was the copy for The Expendables 2.  Although it might not have been the best idea, it began by listing the cast.  Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylverster Stallone, Dolph Lundgren, Chuck Norris and Jean-Claude Van Damme.  They aren’t exactly recognised for their acting ability, are they?  And it just had their names listed as it might list Marlon Brando, Meryl Streep or Jack Nicholson.  It then moved onto the plot:

A mercenary group undertakes a seemingly simple mission that turns into a quest for revenge when a rival mercenary, who is threatening the whole world with a deadly weapon, murders a member of their group.

And this is the problem.  The unimaginative, run-of-the-mill copy actually makes The Expendables 2 sound as bad as… The Expendables 1.  The worst thing is I still watched it.  And it’s only bad because it made me wonder why the bad copy did nothing to dissuade me.  And this made me wonder whether copy actually works…

Crucial copy

You might think knee surgery looks complicated.  However, my brother has a set of steak knives and the Dummies Guide to Knee Surgery.  I’ve got the choice between him, and this other doctor whose advertisement points out the professional education, years of experience, satisfied clients, constant training and focus on safety and welfare which play a major part in the fully registered hospital where he practices.  It’s a tough choice.

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