That's Amateur Hour

Follow me as I open your eyes to the world of hopelessly inadequate and helplessly pathetic attempts to market products, services, and ideas.
- Paulo Molina
  • September 15, 2013 10:30 am
    That’s Mickey Mouse Hour
This outlandish piece of work comes to us straight from colonial Mexico, where a confectionary dares to go mano-a-mano with our beloved, animated rodent.
There’s not much to pen here beyond … I mean, just look at the photo. It’s laughable to think that someone would have big enough cojones to shamelessly rip off both the Disney logo AND the Disney font. That in and of itself would have made this a classic. But it turns out that Mexico’s “Candy World” also swipes its name from another Candy World that’s been operating in U.S. since the mid 90’s.
It’s actually not THAT unusual to hear about unabashed brand rip-offs. China’s loose oversight leads to numerous finds, including this amazingly-real Apple Store knockoff. And recently there was the case of a “Hitler Fried Chicken” operating in Thailand; KFC was not amused.  
But it IS rare to encounter such an overt display in an industrialized Western setting. After all, this Candy World was found inside a popular mall within the confines of Puebla, Mexico … and not in some remote village in the Andes.
Looks like Mickey’s become the Fourth Caballero.
- Paulo Molina, thatsamateurhour.com View high resolution

    That’s Mickey Mouse Hour

    This outlandish piece of work comes to us straight from colonial Mexico, where a confectionary dares to go mano-a-mano with our beloved, animated rodent.

    There’s not much to pen here beyond … I mean, just look at the photo. It’s laughable to think that someone would have big enough cojones to shamelessly rip off both the Disney logo AND the Disney font. That in and of itself would have made this a classic. But it turns out that Mexico’s “Candy World” also swipes its name from another Candy World that’s been operating in U.S. since the mid 90’s.

    It’s actually not THAT unusual to hear about unabashed brand rip-offs. China’s loose oversight leads to numerous finds, including this amazingly-real Apple Store knockoff. And recently there was the case of a “Hitler Fried Chicken” operating in Thailand; KFC was not amused.

    But it IS rare to encounter such an overt display in an industrialized Western setting. After all, this Candy World was found inside a popular mall within the confines of Puebla, Mexico … and not in some remote village in the Andes.

    Looks like Mickey’s become the Fourth Caballero.

    - Paulo Molina, thatsamateurhour.com

  • July 1, 2013 7:03 pm
    
Complaint Letter for the Ages
At long last, I’ve found my brother-in-humor! And it comes via this absolutely-equisite complaint recently published in a British Virgin Islands newspaper.
Beyond the brilliant sarcasm, the piece direct at Caribbean airline LIAT has actually proven quite effective. It’s been re-posted all over the web and was even blogged by Sir Richard Branson (who owns Virgin Atlantic … which oddly enough is LIAT’s only active partner airline).
Goes to show that sometimes the best way to reach your audience is by exercising some good, ol’ cynicism.
The letter is pure comedy gold. The airline? Apparently nothing but a treasure chest of amateur hour.
- Paulo Molina, thatsamateurhour.com
View high resolution

    Complaint Letter for the Ages

    At long last, I’ve found my brother-in-humor! And it comes via this absolutely-equisite complaint recently published in a British Virgin Islands newspaper.

    Beyond the brilliant sarcasm, the piece direct at Caribbean airline LIAT has actually proven quite effective. It’s been re-posted all over the web and was even blogged by Sir Richard Branson (who owns Virgin Atlantic … which oddly enough is LIAT’s only active partner airline).

    Goes to show that sometimes the best way to reach your audience is by exercising some good, ol’ cynicism.

    The letter is pure comedy gold. The airline? Apparently nothing but a treasure chest of amateur hour.

    - Paulo Molina, thatsamateurhour.com

  • March 16, 2013 3:11 pm
    Do Cry for Me Argentina
It won’t be easy, you’ll think it strange … if I even try to explain how a local CBS station mistook Colombia for Argentina during its coverage of the new Pope.
Now, U.S. networks are no strangers to geography gaffes (former CNN anchor Rick Sanchez is notorious). But you figure someone on the CBS production team would know better, particularly on a channel that reaches a high number of Latinos.
The new, Argentinian Pope took the name ”St. Francis of Assisi" in large part because of his work for the poor. Perhaps his first order of business should be to help those with a poor sense of place locate his homeland.
So while it may not be of biblical proportions, this mistake ranks right up there on the amateur-hour scale. And even an “ordinary, unimportant, and undeserving” Evita would cry.
- Paulo Molina, thatsamateurhour.com View high resolution

    Do Cry for Me Argentina

    It won’t be easy, you’ll think it strange … if I even try to explain how a local CBS station mistook Colombia for Argentina during its coverage of the new Pope.

    Now, U.S. networks are no strangers to geography gaffes (former CNN anchor Rick Sanchez is notorious). But you figure someone on the CBS production team would know better, particularly on a channel that reaches a high number of Latinos.

    The new, Argentinian Pope took the name ”St. Francis of Assisi" in large part because of his work for the poor. Perhaps his first order of business should be to help those with a poor sense of place locate his homeland.

    So while it may not be of biblical proportions, this mistake ranks right up there on the amateur-hour scale. And even an “ordinary, unimportant, and undeserving” Evita would cry.

    - Paulo Molina, thatsamateurhour.com

  • December 8, 2012 9:19 am
    View To A Kill
I often come across products that prompt me to sigh and think, “Only in Miami!” Such was the case when I was recently exposed to Car Lashes while flipping through the pages of “SkyMall” on a flight to, you guessed it, Miami.
This automotive beauty really takes the cake: I mean, who in their right mind wouldn’t want to spruce up their ride with a nice pair of human-like eyelashes?
Besides the originals that are described as giving cars a distinctive and “personalized feminine touch,” Car Lashes also offers other goodies such as crystal eyeliners and the patent-pending diamond crystals accents that can be used to add “fun geometric shapes to the car’s body.” 
And in the ultra-competitive car culture of South Florida, in which anything less than a TV in every headrest makes you look amateur hour, Car Lashes are the perfect solution … an accessory that gives your car great odds of being picked up for the night while its curbed on a street corner.
Kidding aside, the holidays are here and this is no doubt the ultimate stocking stuffer for the driver craving differentiation and sophistication. Because nothing says “I roll out in a high-end Beemer and I’ve got good taste” than xenons augmented by a pair of brand new lashes.
Mascara sold separately.
- Paulo Molina, thatsamateurhour.com View high resolution

    View To A Kill

    I often come across products that prompt me to sigh and think, “Only in Miami!” Such was the case when I was recently exposed to Car Lashes while flipping through the pages of “SkyMall” on a flight to, you guessed it, Miami.

    This automotive beauty really takes the cake: I mean, who in their right mind wouldn’t want to spruce up their ride with a nice pair of human-like eyelashes?

    Besides the originals that are described as giving cars a distinctive and “personalized feminine touch,” Car Lashes also offers other goodies such as crystal eyeliners and the patent-pending diamond crystals accents that can be used to add “fun geometric shapes to the car’s body.”

    And in the ultra-competitive car culture of South Florida, in which anything less than a TV in every headrest makes you look amateur hour, Car Lashes are the perfect solution … an accessory that gives your car great odds of being picked up for the night while its curbed on a street corner.

    Kidding aside, the holidays are here and this is no doubt the ultimate stocking stuffer for the driver craving differentiation and sophistication. Because nothing says “I roll out in a high-end Beemer and I’ve got good taste” than xenons augmented by a pair of brand new lashes.

    Mascara sold separately.

    - Paulo Molina, thatsamateurhour.com

  • August 12, 2012 10:28 am
    Pure Olympic Scrap
I couldn’t do it. Couldn’t pass up the opportunity to at the very least scribe a few words on what is certainly the most appalling logo in Olympic history. One that supposedly set back organizers a mere £400,000.
Not that any of the most recent Olympic logos have been stellar. It’s just that none has been as epically atrocious as this one. The company that designed it - Wolff Olins - claims that the logo had been “considered very carefully - thinking about font, colour and image.” In fact, it actually had the audacity to describe this identity as “using interesting shapes and angles” to create a “sense of energy.”
The only energy I’ve ever felt is the one that repels me from looking at this discombobulation. Apparently inspired by graffiti art, perhaps the designers were looking to inspire the youth segment or simply (or, not so simply) devise a bold, look-at-me piece. Misguided, what they and the rest of the world were left with was an unbalanced, controversial, and petition-bearing monster that bites of generic abstract art and that doesn’t work from any angle or with any color … err, colour.
Which is too bad, given that these London Olympics have been rightfully praised for its organization, safety, and spirit.
Let’s just hope that when it comes to the spirit of this design, it’s game … set … please-don’t-match.
- Paulo Molina, thatsamateurhour.com

    Pure Olympic Scrap

    I couldn’t do it. Couldn’t pass up the opportunity to at the very least scribe a few words on what is certainly the most appalling logo in Olympic history. One that supposedly set back organizers a mere £400,000.

    Not that any of the most recent Olympic logos have been stellar. It’s just that none has been as epically atrocious as this one. The company that designed it - Wolff Olins - claims that the logo had been “considered very carefully - thinking about font, colour and image.” In fact, it actually had the audacity to describe this identity as “using interesting shapes and angles” to create a “sense of energy.”

    The only energy I’ve ever felt is the one that repels me from looking at this discombobulation. Apparently inspired by graffiti art, perhaps the designers were looking to inspire the youth segment or simply (or, not so simply) devise a bold, look-at-me piece. Misguided, what they and the rest of the world were left with was an unbalanced, controversial, and petition-bearing monster that bites of generic abstract art and that doesn’t work from any angle or with any color … err, colour.

    Which is too bad, given that these London Olympics have been rightfully praised for its organization, safety, and spirit.

    Let’s just hope that when it comes to the spirit of this design, it’s game … set … please-don’t-match.

    - Paulo Molina, thatsamateurhour.com