Rahul K. Parikh, M.D., has written an open letter to George Lucas and Steven Spielberg on Salon attacking…well, not these guys in particular but Paramount’s Indy 4 marketers for pushing junk-food tie-ins. The gist is that with childhood obesity now at alarming rates, movie tie-ins to fast food are irresponsible.
True, but why single Paramount out? Haven’t a fairly high percentage of summer tentpole movies used junk-food campaigns for at least the last couple of decades, if not longer? Not to sound cold or dismissive, but the writing has been on the wall for a long time and tens of millions of middle- and lower-middle-class parents (i.e., the ones living in self-enclosed membranes) either don’t want to read it, can’t afford to feed their kids healthy diets, or they’re too distracted or doped up themselves to focus and change course.
The brutal fact is that millions of sedentary, computer-game-obsessed kids in flyover states are doomed to suffer higher disease rates and shortened life spans due to morbid obesity, which is the inevitable result of eating crap and doing no exercise. Which is — okay, agreed — partly the responsibility of movie marketers, but more directly the responsibility of their parents. People out there are doped up on so many unhealthy things, and the corporations are naturally cool with this because they’re making big money from being the pushers. And I’m not just talking about junk food.