I haven’t had time to blog recently, but had to put this up. Earlier tonight, while watching a “60 Minutes” insert for director James Cameron’s latest expensive movie, “Avatar” (which is expected to crush all box office records when it comes out next year) I saw this commercial for the identity protection company, Identity Guard.

The commercial riffs on the notorious 419 fraud scam that originates in Nigeria. It is self-explanatory.  I don’t like the commercial’s premise, despite the surprising ending, as it merely reinforces viewers’ racist conceptions of Nigerians.

[BTW, advertising and the movies have been hard on Nigerians lately: In District 9, Nigerians, instead of the aliens, are “the true Others” and not so long ago the 419-theme was at the center of a Sony video game ad.]

Finally on a side note: I wouldn’t be surprised if that commercial was shot in South Africa.

Further Reading