Still selling a Crocodile Dundee cliché
Tourism Australia has unveiled a new campaign “founded on the lamest of puns,” said Charles Purcell. “Australia: Come Live Our Philausophy.” Set aside the fact that the awkward portmanteau can’t be translated into other languages. The promotional videos and posters use hackneyed images and slogans to showcase our laid-back lifestyle, such as “Shoes optional,” and “A stranger is a mate you haven’t met yet.” The tourism board is trying to replicate the wildly successful campaign from the 1980s that featured Paul Hogan—star of Crocodile Dundee—g’daying his heart out as he told Americans he’d throw “another shrimp on the barbie” for them. Fine. If we’re going to be “crass, clichéd, and groan-inducing,” why not go all out? Let’s watch Dame Edna Everage, that purple-haired drag persona of comedian Barry Humphries, “skydive onto Rottnest Island before taking a selfie with a quokka.” How about getting TV chef Kylie Kwong to “prepare cordon bleu meals using Vegemite as the main ingredient”? Former rugby star Nick “The Honey Badger” Cummins—the quintessential Aussie bloke who was last year’s featured hunk on The Bachelor Australia—could lead tour buses through our cities, dropping bon mots such as “tough as woodpecker lips.” And we can’t disappoint the tourists once they arrive: We’ll all have to become living stereotypes.