The Matrix’s Agent Smith Takes a Shine to GE’s Brilliant Machines

Sentient computer program likes what he sees

Hey, what better way for GE to tout its "brilliant machines" designed for the healthcare sector than to show Agent Smith, the villainous sentient AI from The Matrix, stalking the corridors of a bad-dreamy medical scenario? Actor Hugo Weaving dons the shades, suit and earpiece once more, reprising his famous role in this BBDO New York spot (which broke this weekend during Saturday Night Live) as he rides and pushes gurneys, watches himself get examined, flickers across a CT-scan monitor and hovers menacingly while observing an operation. Whoa. Obamacare is even worse than I'd imagined! Makes you long for the kindly Mr. Data from Star Trek: The Next Generation, who had a cameo earlier in the campaign. Weaving's an awesome presence, though he is sinister in the extreme, especially at the end, when he offers a kid the choice of a red or blue lollipop in a nod to the Matrix films. Heck, the overall tone is so sterile and creepy that even the real life-saving machines look a bit threatening. Somebody pull the plug!

@DaveGian David Gianatasio is a longtime contributor to Adweek, where he has been a writer and editor for two decades. Previously serving as Adweek's New England bureau chief and web editor, he remains based in Boston.
Publish date: April 15, 2013 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT