It’s a humorous campaign that might have been just a tiny bit more effective a few months ago- before Israeli beachgoers were splashed all over the international news, running through the sand to escape Hamas rockets.
But the new commercial, launched by the government in an attempt to lure Diaspora youth - specifically North Americans and Russians- is still highly entertaining. It offers Israel as an exciting alternative to the predictable future that a young curly-haired Jewish guy can expect to have in exile. The conventional future presented does seem a bit outdated: house in the suburbs, the wife, the kids, the pot belly - and “Shabbat dinner with the in-laws,” a continuation of a cookie-cutter high school and college career, a tableau that some Diaspora Jews may very well find offensive.
The Israeli alternative is presented as a chaotic and colorful Zohan-esque, Birthright-evocative exaggerated scenario on the beach. The young hero’s chest is suddenly covered with a carpet of dark hair, he is presented with a slew of exciting activities - success in hi-tech, stuffing his face with falafel, yelling at strangers in a movie theater.
The penultimate scene, in the video, which debuted Tuesday, with clear aspirations to go viral, shows our hero, perched on a camel on the beach, with a hot sabra girlfriend in front of him with tan shorts and khaki legs, playing the infamous Israeli beach paddle-ball variant game - matkot.
The edgy strategy that should help intrigue the young people that view the video to consider such an adventure - though its stereotype approach also runs the risk of angering American Jews, just as a previous government attempt at a video campaign did.
Whether the actual state of Israel that confronts those who end up hopping on a plane can live up to their expectations is another story.
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