The video: Some German moviegoers were recently the test subjects for an unusual experiment in advertising. (See clip below.) While an otherwise "wonderfully dull" commercial for BMW unfolded on the screen, a powerful flash projected the the company's logo at the audience — at which point, the commercial's motorsport-star protagonist advised the audience to close their eyes. When they did, the logo appeared to have been imprinted on the insides of their eyelids — much like the after-effect that occurs when you stare at the sun.
The reaction: The eyelid-branding stunt certainly distinguishes BMW's ad from other car commercials, says Matthew Humphries at Geek.com. But even though it succeeded in Germany, says Charlie Sorrel at Wired, "I can't imagine this working in the U.S." Knowing America's litigious culture, "somebody, somewhere, would decide to sue the theater for triggering an epileptic fit." Watch this video to see how the ad worked:
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- Obama just kneecapped Jeb Bush and Chris Christie's 2016 prospects
- How science is accelerating our search for alien life
- The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1: 10 major differences between the book and the movie
- It's official: The religious right is calling it quits
- 6 tiny scientific mistakes that created huge disasters
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- Inside Turkey's shadow war with ISIS
- 10 classic Sesame Street moments we wouldn't show today's kids
- Don't change a thing: 8 inventions that never needed updating
Subscribe to the Week