Greetings, Kotaku, and welcome to the mid-week open thread.

Maybe you've seen this video, which offers a behind-the-scenes look at how McDonald's spruces up its normally ugly food to look good in commercials. Or perhaps not, in which case, check it out.

The (maybe?) wild thing here is that McDonald's themselves made this video. I guess the idea is that showing us the process won't make the ads any less effective. They're probably right!

Friendly hermano Ben Abraham writes a freaky thing on his blog about it.

The brilliance of it all is that by the end of the video we (the viewer) are no longer appalled! There is no story here; we are not disgusted. The sheer banality and ordinariness of it defuses any and all outrage and criticism. There can be no accusations of sinister plots to dupe an unsuspecting public because – surprise! – we are now in on the magic trick. "See! Now you are complicit in our deception, and you are going to like it."

Dang. Advertising feels so central to our lives these days. Are ads their own type of art? Are they worthy of discussion as such? How much do you think you're convinced by advertisements? Do you still eat McDonald's?

And hey, if this has got you down, be sure to check out this amazing list of amazing things and amazing people at BuzzFeed. Did I mention it's amazing? Aw.

Let those prompts guide your way. And as always, feel free to discuss anything else you want as well. The Open Thread is now underway.