DirecTV “Fight Club” commercial for voice control
In this Fight Club themed advertisement for Direct TV’s new voice control feature, “Bill” is talking in an underground fight club and the “man with the neck tattoo” is not listening to what he is saying. We are then shown how DirecTV’s voice control always listens to what he says.
Who is the Man With the Neck Tattoo?
Some people have claimed that the actor playing the guy with the neck tattoo is Micky Rourke but we have not been able to confirm this. Upon close examination, the actor playing the man with the next tattoo appears to be much younger than Micky Rourke, leaving the name of the actor that plays the man with the neck tattoo a mystery. In the background of the Fight Club scene we can see Diego Sebastian who is credited in the commercial for his non-speaking bit-part.
What the DirecTV commercial says :
(Bill, in underground fight club): Wait. I think you have the wrong guy here
(Announcer): Bill is talking, but the man with the neck tattoo is just not listening
(Bill): There’s been some kind of mistake
(Announcer): If only he was more like Bill’s Direct TV. With DirecTV voice control all Bill has to say is “find romantic comedies” and there they are. Right now Bill is looking forward to watching Love Actually and looking forward to blacking out soon. Search and record with just your voice. Call 1-800-DIRECTV.
Claims made in this commercial:
This commercial makes two claims about it’s voice control system:
- All Bill has to say is “find romantic comedies” and there they are
- Search and record with just your voice
Most people would understand these two claims to mean that if they buy the DirecTV service, they will be able search for and record movies and TV shows with just their voice as shown in the commercial. Because there is no mention of fees or special hardware, many people may also assume that the voice control feature is part of the Direct TV service for $24.99 per month as shown at the end of the commercial – ie; no additional fees or hardware are required for the voice-control.
The truth and what this commercial is really saying:
When we see Bill sitting on the couch with his wife/girlfriend the following “fine print” is shown at the bottom of the screen:
Requires an iPhone or Android phone with DIRECTV App and home-based Wi-fi connected to a HD DVR (model HR24 or later). Advanced Receiver fee applies. Additional data charges may apply. Scheduler requires a DirecTV login. In rare instances scheduled recordings may not be recognized. Other conditions apply. Call or visit direcTV.com/voice for details.
Near the end of the commercial for approximately 1 second we are shown in giant font “$24.99” along with the words “package offers starting at” and “for 12 months after instant savings. 24-mo. agrmnt req’d” in a much smaller, difficult to read font-size.
This additional fine print is then shown at the bottom of the screen for approximately 2 seconds:
Ends 1/2/14. New Approved customers only (lease required). Credit card required (except MA & PA). Other conditions apply.
On closer examination of the commercial, you can see that Bill is holding a smartphone in his hand, but the smartphone is partially or mostly obscured by his knee. Just before Bill begins to to say “find romantic comedies”, he lifts the smartphone up and holds it at about stomach-level – we can see this only for a fraction of a second before the camera cuts to a closeup of Bill’s mouth saying “find romantic comedies”.
Based on the near invisible fine print and disclaimers we also know that his smartphone must be connected to his WiFi, he must have home internet service, he must have created a DirecTV login at DirecTV.com, he must pay extra for an HD DVR and “in rare instances”, the whole thing might not even work. In order for Bill to get the $24.99 price shown in at the end of the commercial he must be a new customer, order only the basic service package and he must agree to a 2 year leasing agreement. As mentioned above, the $24.99 price does not include the additional hardware required to use the DirecTV voice control being featured in the commercial
Can Bill really just say “find romantic comedies” and “there they are” and can Bill really search and record with just his voice?
According to the response of several people we asked after reading our analysis of this commercial, the answer is a resounding NO! Everyone we asked unanimously agreed that this TV commercial is very deceptive in hiding the details and costs required to use the Voice Control features of DirecTV