Is it me, or are the MAC vs IBM commercials with the two guys truly witty?

I know the Mac actor is Justin Long, John Hodgmane plays the IBM actor. But I really like these ads, they are conceptually brilliant and beautifully orchestrated. However, the hoodie wearing, jeans sporting young hip Justin Long is basically parodying Apples very own image. This taken from the Slate article which outlines the parody very nicely, and gives some insight into Apples ad campaign, and how it may not be working the way it was meant to.

What do the Mac users feel about the ad, how about the IBM-ers?

They’re supposed to be self-deprecating and funny. What amuses me is that the “cool” Mac guy is really the straight man of the act.

I’ve used Macs in the past and mostly like them, but those commercials really, really, make me dislike Apple. Worst example of strawman advertising I’ve seen in a long time.

I think I almost loathe them as much as the anti-smoking Truth ads.

Thanks for that link! I have been arguing that these ads (funny as I do find them) are kind of mean and I actually come from them preferring PC to Mac.


At the link, there’s a (pretty funny) video imagining “what if Microsoft did Ipod’s marketing?” The music at that video sounds familiar to me. Can someone identify its name and/or composer?


I’m a Windows user, but I have no particular aversion to Apple products. The commercials are funny, but the smugness outweighs the humor. So my overall reaction is mildly negative.

What I like about the ads is that the Mac guy doesn’t denigrate the IBM guy, but, rather, expresses sympathy for him.

That pretty much sums up my feelings on it. While they are amusing, they wouldn’t even begin to make think of buying a mac. I’ve used PC’s since…well lets just say for a long time and have never encountered any of the things that they claim are the shortcomings of the PC.

I love them. I use Windows, and I don’t much like Mac, mostly due to an outdated grr because schools used them and no one else in the past. But c’mon…PC’s running Windows DO crash more, and are more vulnerable to internet borne viruses, and they are harder to set up with peripherals and stuff! It’s funny 'cause it’s true! The ads aren’t effective in that they’re going to convince me to get a Mac, but the are totally effective in making me stop FFing through my DVR playback and actually rewinding to watch an ad!

Antinor01 - You’ve NEVER had a PC freeze up, or give you the Blue Screen of Death, or get a virus or spend an hour chasing down a driver for a new camera? You’re a luckier user than I.


No he doesn’t.

Or, well, he sort of does, but smugly. As far as I can tell, that’s the intention of the ads’ writers.


Thats the exact intention of the Ad writers…I would say.

Blue screen I have gotten rarely, maybe twice, freeze up…not that I can think of in years. Viruses I’ve had a couple times but nothing that has caused me problems. I’ve never had the driver problem, I’ve found peripherals very easy to install.

Never was more of a reaction to the commercials where they seem to be claiming that Macs NEVER get any of those things.

I love those commercials. I think they’re brilliantly written and executed, and Justin Long and John Hodgman are wonderful.

I think they’re brilliant commercials. They’re more about branding Macs as the alternative to PCs–cool, casual, a little bit of the bad boy. You don’t usually see Macs in the corporate world, so yeah, there’s a little bit of exclusivity and smugness there.

I think they’re pretty witty too w/o being overly mean spirited. Can’t say I put a whole lot of stock in whatever point they’re trying to make because, yeah, they’re strawman all the way but, neverthelsss, the performances themselves are so well done I can’t help but smile.

Yeah, but who’s hotter?

I say John Hodgman.

I agree with the linked article.

Why the hell would I not want to be Hodgman?

And then they go and make claims about PCs that I know not to be true.

How interesting, we have the same campaign running in the UK, but with different actors. Ours are two pretty well-known comedians who perform together in a cult TV show called ‘Peep’ show (, and the characters shown in the ads are exactly their characters in the show, so it resonates really well here.

Take a peek (peep)

Not since XP came out. Aside from more “in depth”/intensive things, like video and sound cards, I’ve never had to download “hard to find” drivers to get something to work. Hell, 90% of things don’t need any driver downloaded/installed. Every camera, every printer, every mouse and keyboard has worked just fine when I plugged it in. As long as it’s designed to work with XP, there is only a small chance that it will need some obscure, hard to find, driver. And you could say the same ting about a Mac. If it’s not designed to work with OS X, then it’s going to be hard to get it to work.

But the commercial that annoys me most is the one where they are in boxes, and the Mac guy gets up and is like “Well, I’m ready to go!” and the PC guy is like “well, I have to download drivers, uninstall dumb software, read the manual, and some of me is in other boxes.”

Ok, so…what? No matter what, everyone can intuitively use a Mac and never need a manual, yet everyone, even people who have used them before, needs to read a manual for a PC? And in other boxes? What? So they package the monitor, keyboard, mouse, and tower in separate boxes, and that’s bad, how? I kind of like having a monitor that is separate from my main machine, because I can replace and upgrade just that and not the whole damn thing.

IBM? What the heck? I thought the commercials were slamming Microsoft based PC’s? I’ll have to youtube some and check, I guess.

Does IBM still make personal computers? Servers and workstations I have, even some older laptops, but a new PC?

Wow, maybe I’m out of touch… Thought they sold that division off to a Korean firm a couple years ago. Loved the black cases back in the day. Second computer was an IBM 8088…