Pristiq Wind-up Doll Goes to the Beach
…in this current advertisement in American “women’s” magazines (incl.”First for Women”, “Women’s World”, and others that litter check-out stands across North America that would have one think that we still live in the 1950s). Yup, depressed Ms. Pristiq dressed in her usual plain old dull frock into a magic mirror of sorts and there is her un-depressed double, dressed in no less than iddy-biddy blue jean shorts and a bright yellow tank top, holding a beach bag, metal wind-up switch fastened firmly to her back*, ready to jump into the
minivan crossover vehicle and drive to find some nature including water for the kids to play in. (Yes, I once again have time to conduct my little media analyses, which make me feel a little less guilty for looking at these “women’s” magazines and watching cable television… )
A T.V. spot also intended for the audience of the depressed female population. <Sad news warning> Herein lies the profit, evidently, sisters – our feelings have been colonized, and are being exploited for profit, as we have been convinced by endless entities within mass media that we need to be made of steel (or plastic) and perform on demand, without violating any of the mores of social conduct (the grief I have gotten for crying in public! At worst, it got me banned from a store). Having trouble? “Why don’t you try some of these?,” says Wyeth, sounding eerily like a high-school drug peddler.
Apparently – and hell, I am guilty myself – we said, “Okay.” The mass prescription of antidepressants followed – and now antipsychotics like Seroquel, stated to be potentially useful as the chemical equivalent of a nudge, making the antidepressant that still hasn’t resolved all/any of your unwanted feelings shape up and work better. Cartoon woman tells us that Seroquel XR (a strong atypical antipsychotic…the first time it was given to me I was drooling) may be added to one’s regimen already consisting of an antidepressant that isn’t working as well as one imagined it might. Alas, we are in the realm of some serious head games, brought to us by AstraZeneca and Wyeth. In this television ad, cartoon woman has a very distinctive – one might even say, er, odd, distinctly unlifelike, unrealistic…something – voice tells us all about how popping more pharms made her feel much better, so much so that she sounds really happy when she describes the side-effects, including the possibility of “sudden death”, as she frolicks with her own husband and 2.4 children, suggesting that this may be the pill that also works for you.
Now, when it all comes down to dust, as they say, what does “working” even imply when it comes to Pristiq/desvenlafaxine (yup, like venlafaxine, or Effexor, but a different isomer, i.e. the atoms of chemicals like hydrogen are in a different order. Pretty cutting edge science. It makes Wyeth plenty of money. ), or Effexor (1.0) plus Seroquel XR – what does the opposite of depression look like? Not the opposite of “sad” or “angry”, but “depressed”. Does it look like a plastic doll? A wind-up doll? Is this what we want for ourselves?
Now, I know it’s what most of society wants for us – I won’t take the time to name names . But really, what do we want for our selves?