The Postmodern Sociological Implications of the Geico Caveman

Before musing further, allow me to pause and mention that Geico is the only company that I can think of who is operating their marketing strategy with 3 very distinct and unrelated “mascots”. They have the Caveman, whom we will deal with in a moment, the gecko, and the wad of cash with the big eyeballs. Each appears to be equally successful at increasing the brand’s recognition through humor…something not entirely easy to do with any company, let alone with a company as unexciting as insurance. Very clever and well done!

Now that I’ve got that slice of praise out of the way, I’d like to bring attention to something really interesting about the Caveman personality. This, by the way, will have nothing to do with the factuality or fallacy of cavemen in general, so if that is what you are hoping for I am sorry to disappoint. What I find so remarkable about this Caveman is the way that Geico has found to use him in a postmodern world. The poor neanderthal is always finding himself in predicaments that insult his intelligence. The tagline is: “So Easy A Caveman Can Do It”. The company is referring to the simplicity of getting quotes on their website, but that is hardly what crosses the mind of the audience. The pleasure they receive instead comes from the humor of his peril.

So here’s the genius. Despite the avalanche of political correctness in our day, we still live in a world where people in their hearts enjoy making fun of others or looking down upon them. However, it’s simply not allowed anymore (unless perhaps it is aimed at a white person). The PC Police have every corner of media and entertainment on lockdown. But Geico has found a loophole–an exception! They have found the perfect tool in which ALL can safely exercise their ‘prejudiced’ humor and actually feel good about it. Voila! You see, there are no cavemen around to be offended so there is no harm and no foul. And if you do happen to believe in cavemen (pitiable as you may be), well they are all our ancestors so we are no more laughing at another than we are ourselves. It’s perfect marketing for ‘bigot’ in all of us!

In short: Kudos Geico! You have restored hope in all of us that our inner ‘intolerance’ mustn’t be suppressed after all.

*Out of reverent respect for the politically correct powers that patrol the internet, I should probably add that this is all a joke…sort of.

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