Thursday, August 20, 2009

Blog looked for a place to sit

Hello again. Yesterday I promised you some thoughts on magazine captions. Here they are:

In many magazines aimed at men, either self-professed lads' mags, or magazines for men that have a veneer, or even facade, of being upmarket, there is golden rule they all follow blindly. Hilarious captions. Every picture must have a side-splittingly funny caption. This is because, you see, men like humour. Of course we do. We like drinking lager, staring at women, and laughing. Ideally at the expense of our mates when they do Something Stupid.

As such, magazine chiefs believe that by giving every picture a witty, offbeat, irreverent caption, they are appealing to LADS! enjoyment. But they're wrong. It's just bloody annoying. I don't need every picture to have a caption, and I certainly don't need them all to be jokes. In fact, the effect is cheapened by having every caption trying to be your friend because if there is one or two genuinely wry observations on an amusing quirk in an image they are buried beneath the avalanche of mediocre ones on every page.

Worst, and Shortlist does this a lot, the writers often give an inanimate object a personality, or an essence of being 'alive', by capitalising the word. So, for example, a ladder becomes "Ladder" and the caption could read. "Ladder wished he'd gone to Spain on holiday" or something equally banal. There was even a job advertised for Shortlist in which you had to submit your own "Shortlist style caption" for a picture of Tim Lovejoy.

Here's mine: Tim wondered why there was a game of PacMan on his t-shirt.


Five-Centres said...

Someone at Shortlist clearly thinks they're a quite the wag. But those captions become very irritating after about the third one.

My caption: "Lead singer from Level 42 discovered working at Isle of Wight call centre"

Anonymous said...

theyre not even funny pictures in the first place most of the time - this one here is a perfect example, its just a bloke sitting at a desk. On the caption comeptition on have i got news for you and for example, the pictures are usually amusing enough even before any funny observations are made

Simon said...

I believe it was ST Format that used to try and shoehorn Star Trek references into picture captions. Mind you, that was the early 90s.

Anonymous said...

I'm wearing a cardigan because I'm comfortable with my sexuality. Are you ?