Bad Writing: The Back Up Plan

I’m amazed sometimes by the lack of grammatical accuracy in some adverts. More amazed by the fact that people who speak and write using the English language, also fail to notice, or are not just as annoyed as me by the misuse of said terrible useage.

For today, let me direct you to the following, the film poster for shitty rom-com The Back-Up Plan.

Yes, terrible poster for a terrible film. Let’s forget the holier-than-thou smug expressions on both their faces and instead concentrate on the tag-line.

So, here’s a quirky tagline for an awful film. Why has it riled me up so much? Let’s take it step by step. The tagline is clearly in the style of a to-do list, ordered by priority. It’s been edited in a pink pen to realign these priorities.

Before editing, Fall in Love is at the top of the list, then Get Married and then Have a Baby.

Post editing, the list would read Have a Baby, Fall in Love, Get Married. This would require the last item of the list to be moved to the top. One move. However, the editing of the list has two edits on there. One moving Have a Baby to the top, and then another moving Get Married down. This doesn’t make sense. If you were to move the third item to the top, you would not require any other editing to put the list in a new order.

To make matters worse, there is a footnote to the whole list that reads, ‘Not neccessarily in that order’ making the whole listing, and prioritising of the list completely redundant. This whole poster is needlessly complicated and the people who designed it clearly thought they were being intelligent.

Rant over. We will resume normal service shortly.

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