“How did advertising for tobacco-related products become hip again?” This is the question that editor and filmmaker Dominick Nero wanted to address with his latest video montage. Against the odds and in blatant defiance of decades of sobering medical reports and death tolls, the foul weed tobacco has once again become socially acceptable, even hip, with the advent of vaping and e-cigarettes. “Let’s be honest here,” writes Nero, “there’s nothing cool about inhaling an addictive, piece of shit substance… Addiction is sad, and e-cigarettes are just a futuristic way to hurt ourselves.” “Sad White Guys Smoking E-Cigarettes” is Nero’s way of surgically removing the coolness of e-cigarettes by remixing real vape commercials.
What remains after Nero’s handiwork is a bunch of bummed-out, listless Caucasian dudes who look like they have “Everybody Hurts” playing in their heads on a continuous loop as they slowly exhale their decidedly unhip fumes. Some of the guys in the ads have beautiful women practically hanging off them, but the vapers seem too bored and enervated to even make eye contact. The montage is Nero’s protest against the ubiquitous e-cigarette advertisements he encounters “on subway trains, websites, even TV.” To truly drive the point home, Nero also judiciously included some footage of a vaping Johnny Depp in The Tourist. After all, as everyone knows, there is nothing less cool than Johnny Depp in The Tourist.