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Does the North Pole Get 4G?

Last I checked, it’s still December, which means that we’re still going to be bombarded with Christmas ads. Out of the B-Reel camp, there’s a new “Direct Line to Santa” website to promote Verizon Fios that lets shoppers have customizable conversations with their favorite jolly obese man. When he asks what gift you’d like, it may be tempting to type in the dirtiest words you can think of, but then you realize it’s Verizon Fios and Santa doesn’t exist, so who’s the joke really on?

B-Reel houses a strong stable of talent—including Like Crazy director Drake Doremus—and most of their spots attempt to incorporate narrative and/or cool genre elements from features. Tom Malmros, who’s directed fresh commercials for Burger King and Toyota, created this Santa stuff with more of a paint-by-numbers approach.

The site is pretty stale due to some clunky A.I. and awkward pauses, but I did want to see Santa’s response to my wish list. When I asked for a basketball, he told he used to be a baller back in his younger days. I guess even fat guys can be superstars when playing against elves. However, when I asked him for the new Kendrick Lamar CD, he rambled about elves making computers. Not even close, Santa.

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