In a possibly regular weekly column, The Red and Blue launches a rant in the style of that moaning bloke on a morning train talking so loudly everybody can hear.
Slip on your Friday moccasins, find your comfy chair. This is a whinge about the old days.
When men were men, women were women, cats were cats and dogs were dogs. Unless the dog was a Blue Heeler, and then it was a policeman we watched solve the exact same case every week.
A time when there were just 4 channels for us Australians. (Plus SBS for foreigners and students)
And footy advertising promoted things you actually bought.
Who even sponsors Melbourne these days? Webjet? Opel? Do they even exist anymore? Chinese Caravan Airways?
Frankly, and as much as the cash is appreciated, it doesn’t matter, because it’s LG and Tooheys who will always be synonymous with the Demons.
Looking around the grounds these days, it’s all initials. NIB, NAB, ING, IINET, even most of the kits are made by ISC.
Who are these people? Well, insurance and banking things mostly. Companies who’ll gladly splurge dollars to get their indistinguishable names to the frontal lobe of us AFL fans.
But what’s our thought process to be?
Yes! Salem has kicked the goal, we’ve beaten the Bombers! Crack open the beer…But only after I’ve looked up some excellent flight deals.
Our minds simply don’t work like that. When I watch Richmond, do I feel like an American car?
No. I feel like buying a bigger microwave.
I’m sure there’s a man in an ill-fitting, scratchy suit who’s got pie charts about things like brand exposure and target demographic markets who can explain to me why these companies brandish their names on our game.
But it feels more reassuring for adverts to be a simple process.
Jeremy Howe leaps into the air to take his third spectacular mark of the game. I’m not looking at the advertisements thinking ‘Yes, now it’s time to rethink how much my house is insured for.’
No. I’m thinking, ‘I’ve just spilt my beer all over my trousers, and I will definitely need another one.’
What people who care about footy want to know about for those 3 hours are alcohol, dodgy fast food, and defunct electrical stores.
Is this setting a bad example for our kids?
Well no, because I’m sure young footy playing kids will probably discover alcohol and fast food even if Jack Watts’ clothing is considered a major part of their education.
Instead, because of modern AFL advertising, they may become misguided and think travel agencies, banking or insurance offer cool careers.
The danger for this generation of AFL footy fans could be worse than a hangover. It could be an entire career spent in an ill-fitting, scratchy suit discussing pie charts.
So don’t just bring back the bump. Don’t just bring back the bump and the mullet.
Bring them both back, but most importantly, adverts for things footy fans actually care about.
Won’t somebody please think of the children.