I'm going to bring up some things that I've talked about with a couple people I've met. This was going to be longer, but I've something else to talk about.
For those of you who don't know, the Christian Bible's Book of Revelation is believed to be a prophecy of our future, It warns at the end of chapter 13 that the "AntiChrist", the one who will force the world to accept the beast who builds his own statue and commits atrocities, will bear a name identified with the number six hundred, three score, and six. Never mind that the correct translation is 936, never mind that the correct translation is "ante-Christ" (before Christ), not "AntiChrist" (against Christ), never mind that historians completely reject the current translations--Christians believe it, and big business is delightfully exploiting the terror that dominates American Protestant beliefs.
I can understand using it to advertise the release of The Omen on Tuesday, but that's about it. The rest has turned the fear of evil into a marketing gimmick. I haven't seen many ads involving Tuesday besides the aforementioned movie, but marketers (one of the most evil groups of people in the world, IMHO, and I got an A in marketing, so I can say that) jumped on it like Anna Nicole Smith on a dying millionaire.
Marketing gimmicks are just that: gimmicks. Magicians have gimmicks to make the trick entertaining. Pro wrestlers--excuse, me, professional sports entertainers--have gimmicks to gain popularity ("get pops"). Gimmicks are designed to distract from what's really going on. Ignore the gimmick and you'll see the guy who got in the box join the dancers and leave with them; or that he really, really can't wrestle; or that the gift the bank offers costs less than your monthly fee.
In writing, a gimmick is there to make you not catch what a statement really means. It's context that makes remarks sound like it's in relation to the gimmick (Character sitting on a racehorse: "She's the fastest thing on four legs.") when it refers to something else (the leopard pelts he runs through the black market). Entertainment is about the only good use for the concept, such as prestidigitation.
Next time, I'll talk about my Writer's Pet Peeve.
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