Apple's new iPhone 5S ad: Complete with song about oh, really?

A pulsating new ad for the iPhone 5s trumpets its power. Its musical accompaniment is "Gigantic" by the Pixies -- which is about, well, try guessing.

gigantic.png
It's hugely useful. Apple/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

I will avoid the issue at hand for as long as possible.

I will focus on the fact that Apple has released a brand-new ad for the iPhone 5S. It is a very, very fine ad.

It features some splendid scenes in which the iPhone 5S does splendid things with the help of splendid apps to make humanity seem and feel more splendid.

It is uplifting, anthemic, and really quite joyous. It has people using the phone in various ways to create music, check their health, and do other entirely vital things.

It has an accompanying Web page that explains all the apps in the ad and helps you feel more powerful.

Its tagline, coincidentally, is "You're More Powerful Than You Think," which some might take as a suggestion that we should all exert ourselves a little more.

During the ad, there is a very fine all-girl band singing a song.


Here we get to the stickier part.

This girl band is singing a song called "Gigantic." It was originally recorded by the Pixies.

I confess that, though I have heard this song before, I hadn't spent much time considering its lyrics.

Some mischievous part of me wondered whether this song had been chosen because the next iPhone really would have a quite enormous screen.

Still, I wafted to the Internet in order to educate myself about the roots of the lyrics.

Wikipedia told me: "The song's voyeuristic lyrics mostly revolve around a woman's observation of an attractive black man making love to another woman, culminating in the oddly lighthearted but sexual chorus: 'Gigantic, gigantic, gigantic / A big, big love.'"

I struggle with the phrase "oddly lighthearted but sexual." I see no struggle between lightheartedness and sexuality.

But I'm also struggling because I fear that I know what this song is about and I fear that you do too.

At heart, though, I commend Apple's large daring. For this is an extremely enjoyable ad. And Apple hasn't made many of those lately.

Certainly not on Tuesday.

 

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