The Men Who Made Us Spend
This program on the BBC offered an insight into the pressure put on children through media outlet advertising to purchase products. It referenced advertising and even fictional programming which acted as a franchising tool, rather than quality content. He-Man and Transformers were the examples used, shows made for children, but devised by retailers to promote toy products. It also discussed Star Wars and the importance that toy sales had on that film franchise commercially. This is only too well represented by the fact that Disney recently purchased the brand in a $4billion deal. Star Wars' star as a quality film experience has waned in recent years, but the potential to make money hasn't.
The problem with much content created in the creative industries these days is that consumer potential greatly outweighs demand and performance. Transformers I believe is the perfect example, carrying on from the above mentioned program. Michael Bay has continued to direct 4 installments of Transformer live-action movies so far... movies that are noted and ridiculed for their over the top action sequences and poor storylines. But companies involved, Hasbro, Dreamworks and Paramount will disregard that to a certain extent however, because of the financial success these movies have achieved, so far turning over a $2,000,000,000 profit at the box office alone (bearing in mind the 4th installment has only been out for around a week and has already broken even) 01/07/14
The kind of issues raised in this documentary only furthers my opinion that screenwriters and other creatives in the media industry need to look further at the effect their material has on young audiences, but rather than target this for comercial gain, they should be critical on how it is actually beneficial to the audience in question. What can they learn rather than buy?