is almost a masterpiece of critic-proofing, as James cycles through a series of postures—villain, goofball, self-promoter, pariah, etc.—that's meant to demonstrate his awareness of every bad thing anyone has said about him since he made a public show of spurning the Cleveland Cavaliers to join an all-star edition of the Miami Heat.
The only criticism the commercial doesn't anticipate or outflank is the criticism that James is only able to relate to the public through a television commercial. "What should I do?" he asks the viewer, over and over, as if the original TV special in which he announced his decision had been forced on him, as if the public had rudely violated his private decision-making process against his will. What should I do? James never asked the public that question, and he isn't asking now. He asked Nike. Do this fake-self-aware rebranding campaign, Nike told him.
TODAY IN SLATE
Justice Ginsburg’s Crucial Dissent in the Texas Voter ID Case
The Jarring Experience of Watching White Americans Speak Frankly About Race
How Facebook’s New Feature Could Come in Handy During a Disaster
The Most Ingenious Teaching Device Ever Invented
Sprawl, Decadence, and Environmental Ruin in Nevada
You Should Be Able to Sell Your Kidney
Or at least trade it for something.
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- Police Use Tear Gas to Break Up College Pumpkin Festival Turned Violent
- Racist Rancher Cliven Bundy Challenges Eric Holder in Bizarre Campaign Ad
- Supreme Court Allows Texas Law That Accepts Handgun Permits but not College IDs to Vote
An All-Female Mission to Mars
As a NASA guinea pig, I verified that women would be cheaper to launch than men.