Our next billboard analysis comes courtesy of Clinton Green – candidate for the Taradale ward of Napier City Council.

* From a campaigning point of view, we would have preferred to see the effete “Clinton” shortened to a punchier, more virile “Clint”. “Clinton” sounds like a guy whose first move if elected would be to insist on juniper potpourri in council chambers.

* We can only presume Clinton is the one in the foreground.

* When playing the domestic bliss card, BayBuzz would have thought it prudent the two stand side by side. Having the first lady one step behind won’t appeal to the female vote. If family values are touted – they need to be of this millennium.

Observe the parallels between the billboard and the two following (one step behind your man) satirical paintings. “American Gothic” (left) by Grant Wood, and New Zealander Michael Illingworth’s “A Man and a Woman”.

Who’s parodying who here?

In 1965, Illingworth (above right) wrote that his work reflected an alienated suburbia: – “a naïve, idealistic façade…the little faces in my paintings with no mouths…signify two things; the feeling of a ‘lost quality’ —what am I doing here? where do I belong?..I myself have reached the age of 33 without being activated by money, political, academic, religious or plain middle-class motivations.”

Back to the billboard.

BayBuzz feel the “united front” approach could backfire. The lasting impression is a somewhat patriarchal, overly sanitised croc-pottish wholesomeness. The fact the billboard lends itself so well to caricature, we think, speaks volumes. A little bohemia with the suburbia please.

Happy campaigning!


P.S. Don’t forget to take the BayBuzz Voter Poll.

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