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Hallmark's Demented Tax Postcards
2000-04-12 12:45:47


What a Riot!
 
But then cops REALLY CAME and they SHUT DOWN THE FUTURE so we had to stumble out into the past and look for busses. We gave up and started looking for BATHROOMS.
-- Crackmonkey

 

As civilization atrophies, insanity grips even the bastion of saccharine consumer greeting cards. The fear and paranoia that greets tax day shifts the zeitgeist into a dark, destructive funk. And instinctively, on some deep, primal level, Hallmark begins reflecting the mounting despair with a series of web postcards catering to the cathartic release that can only come from seeing shit fucked up.

Rebellion slices through the Hallmark animation department, where a popular mandate for tax revolt allows the animators to shuck off their former restraints. Death appears over a blood-red sky in an eerie goth cartoon with strange homosexual overtones. In "The Adventures of IRS Man," Hallmark's animators deconstruct the fascist overtones in Superman through a sardonic warning parable that concludes "Happy Tax Day, Citizen."

Foreshadowing the pagan roots of Easter, naked IRS workers cavort and prance lasciviously in "Filing Can Be Fun," and a kinky submissive offering appears to pander to some kind of toilet fetish. The unmistakeable urban funk behind "Need some deductions" belies its innocent surface veneer as it careens recklessly to a hostile and shocking conclusion. And the MIDI hip-hop continues with "File the Easy Way" -- one of two reactionary stories which nihlistically counter the cozy technocentric wisdom of online tax returns. This theme is amplified in a scary -- yet bad -- cartoon with a cat illustrating "The perils of filing your taxes electronically."

Hallmark's subversive artwork apparently raised the hackles of "The Man." Unseen forces at the site have buried the web pages beneath a maze of un-linkable sub-directories, and all visitors to Hallmark.com now get tagged with a "Session ID," presumably to allow government investigators to track their motions through the site for later investigation. But don't let that scare you off! Locate the "Tax Day E-Cards" section in the pull-down menu -- and prepare for a mind-expanding experience. Hallmark's slogan was once derided as "When you care enough to send the very stupidest." Now they're breaking out of the mold, reaching out to a hip alternative generation. Pump it up, Hallmark. And keep on keepin' it real....

Over.  End of Story.  Go home now.

cabin@pigdog.org


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