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
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
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....