By Patrick Appel
Eve Fairbanks is puzzled by Al Franken's new deathly serious campaign ads:

I tend to think gimmick/celebrity candidates too often err on the safe side, leading them to inadvertently reject the very rationales for their candidacies. There's a reason, after all, their parties chose them over that vanilla state senator. Al Franken, moreover, is running in Minnesota, which elected a pro wrestler governor who ran ads featuring his own action figure, for God's sake. I don't mean Franken ought to make himself ridiculous. But where's the humor? Comedy can be a great campaign technique -- it's incisive and humanizing at the same time. Franken comes off like he's embarrassed by the whole concept.

Josh Green profiled Franken earlier this year.

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