I have a lot of time for bees. They are cool. They are placid. They make honey. They are slightly ridiculous (seriously, a bumblebee? Ridiculous!). And humans genuinely couldn't survive without them - seriously. Bees die out; humans starve. So never kill a bee, it's not cool.
Unless it's one of the bees in the Vodafone adverts, quite the worst current example of dopey, charmless, deeply unfunny anthropomorphism on TV screens.
If bees were like this we'd squish the fuckers on the windows, spray chemicals on them until they stopped moving and stamp their guts out.
These adverts are awful. So awful they could make me hate bees. Here are a few things that wouldn't seem so bad if bees were like these Vodafone hymenopteric arseholes:
Deformed wing virus
Deformed wing virus (DWV) is suspected of causing the wing and abdominal deformities often found on adult honeybees in colonies infested with Varroa mites. These symptoms include damaged appendages, particularly stubby, useless wings, shortened, rounded abdomens, miscoloring and paralysis. Symptomatic bees have severely reduced life-span (less than 48 hours usually) and are typically expelled from the hive.
Melissococcus plutonius is a bacterium that infests the mid-gut of an infected bee larva. European foulbrood is less deadly to a colony than American foulbrood. Melissococcus plutonius does not form spores, though it can overwinter on comb. Symptoms include dead and dying larvae which can appear curled upwards, brown or yellow, melted or deflated with tracheal tubes more apparent, and/or dried out and rubbery.
Ascosphaera apis is a fungal disease that infests the gut of the larva. The fungus will compete with the larva for food, ultimately causing it to starve. The fungus will then go on to consume the rest of the larva's body, causing it to appear white and 'chalky'.
Nosema apis is a microsporidian that invades the intestinal tracts of adult bees and causes nosema disease, also known as nosemosis. Nosema is also associated with Black queen-cell virus. Nosema is normally only a problem when the bees can not leave the hive to eliminate waste (for example, during an extended cold spell in winter or when the hives are enclosed in a wintering barn). When the bees are unable to void (cleansing flights), they can develop dysentery.
Acarine (Tracheal) mites
Acarapis woodi is a small parasitic mite that infests the airways of the honey bee.
Varroa destructor and Varroa jacobsoni are parasitic mites that feed off the bodily fluids of adult, pupal and larval bees. Varroa mites can be seen with the naked eye as a small red or brown spot on the bee's thorax. Varroa are carriers for a virus that is particularly damaging to the bees. Bees that are infected with this virus during their development will often have visibly deformed wings.
Chronic Paralysis Virus [CPV]
▪ Syndrome 1 Abnormal trembling of the wings and body. The bees cannot fly and often crawl on the ground and up plant stems. In some cases the crawling bees can be in large numbers (1000+). The bees huddle together on the top of the cluster or on the top bars of the hive. They may have bloated abdomens due to distension of the honey sac. The wings are partially spread or dislocated.
▪ Syndrome 2 Affected bees are able to fly but are almost hairless. They appear dark or black and look smaller. They have a relatively broad abdomen. They are often nibbled by older bees in the colony and this may be the cause of the hairlessness. They are hindered at the entrance to the hive by the guard bees. A few days after infection trembling begins. They then become flightless and soon die.
Deformed Wing Virus (DWV)
As indicated by the name, this virus produces deformed wings. Typically associated with Varroa destructor, it has been suggested as a contributing factor to Colony Collapse Disorder. This deformity can clearly be seen on the honeybee's wings. As a result, bees are unable to leave the hive and forage for pollen and nectar, possibly leading to the colony starving.
Dysentery is a condition resulting from a combination of long periods of inability to make cleansing flights (generally due to cold weather) and food stores which contain a high proportion of indigestible matter. As a bee's gut becomes engorged with feces that cannot be voided in flight as preferred by the bees, the bee voids within the hive. When enough bees do this the hive population rapidly collapses and death of the colony results.
Colony Collapse Disorder
Colony Collapse Disorder (or CCD) is a little-understood phenomenon in which worker bees from a beehive or Western honey bee colony abruptly disappear.
All bee info from Wikipedia
We are complicit in an infantile group delusion that allows the likes of Vodaphone and George Lucas to patronise us with shit Star Wars-related tripe at every turn
It's vaguely pathetic how Star Wars keeps getting trotted out as something that everyone of my generation is supposed to think is the most amazing thing ever like it's a combination of oral sex, beach holidays to the Bahamas and pure unadulterated cocaine all rolled into one.
It was vaguely tolerable when everyone was 18 – everyone's entitled to like stuff from their childhood, even if Star Wars is a massive pile of cack – but when Star Wars is the default meme of choice for a generation of people nearing their 40s... well, it's just a bit sad to be honest.
Vodaphone is the latest company to shrug, stump up ten billion pounds and have a shit Star Wars theme in its advert, apparently in the belief that this deeply tiresome and childish franchise is a keycard to people's wallets.
In its latest advert Yoda is surprised by Vodaphone's ability to transfer numbers from one phone to another. Because of this, Yoda surmises that Vodaphone must have the force. It's utter shit.
Shit springs to mind in a different way upon watching this ad. It's what I imagine George Lucas was depositing into a golden toilet, dressed Dude-style in an old dressing gown, when he lazily texted his permission for the latest ka-chinging knock-off of something he - presumably - once treasured so very fondly.
What a selfish little bitch!
Wait until tomorrow, when your Dad's finally closed what's obviously the most important deal of his entire fricking life, a life he's probably devoted to bringing up his spoilt brat of a kid, lavishing undeserved attention and praise on you while you groom your fucking horse and get treated badly by blokes, because the weird relationship you have with your father has comprehensively fucked you up when it comes to the opposite sex.
And you, Dad, grow some fucking bollocks. I'm sure your special little girl has half a dozen clones she can discuss SATC, Glee and how shit men are with.
But mainly you, you snivelling little Daddy's Girl. Of course he left you; you have some disturbing electra-complex relationship with your old man.
Welcome to a life of disappointment, ruined relationships and co-dependency issues, concluded by an unhappy marriage to a man 30 years your senior.
• Ways to improve this advert: He drives to her car, slaps her around the face, tells her to grow up and goes back to his meeting. I bet there's not a person alive who believes that's not a better ending
Mobile phone adverts are generally the worst, which in a world of terrible advertising means they're pretty bloody debilitating.
This is another one that's a grower, in completely the wrong way. I challenge you to watch it more than five times without crying with impotent fury.
First off, this advert makes no sense whatsoever. "If you ruled the world nothing would be left unsaid," is Vodafone's gambit here. Bollocks.
If I ruled the world I'd exile Piers Morgan to a cave on an island, sleep with Jayne Middlemiss, insert myself into the England cricket team and award myself Prague. I wouldn't go and make a listless phone call. I can do that any time I like, see?
So the whole notion falls over at the slightest breeze. Let's look at the second problem: shit execution.
To say the man in this advert mimes would be to do a grave injustice to mime artists. Sitting almost statue still he just about manages to open his mouth at the right times, in time with what is obviously a huge belter of a James Brown vocal.
His look is all wrong too. He looks like he's called Danny, is a bit slow, eats Ginsters pasties and becomes slightly racist and violent when drunk.
Lastly, the music. Ad people think soul is bombproof. It's impossible, and probably illegal, to not like soul. When people want to look like they know about music they say they like Ben E King, or something.
Soul is usually the right choice for adverts, but this track's shit.
That's a judgement call, but when;
If I ruled the world, every man would be as free as a bird
If I ruled the world, I'd get a bundle of pay-as-you-go texts on the cheap
it's a sad day.
So, when it comes to this advert, if I ruled the world... Well, you probably know what I'd do.