Those Super Bowl commercials
I am writing this post at halftime of the Super Bowl. Originally, I planned to do a short piece about the three former Redskins, each released in disgrace, now playing quite well up in Pittsburgh. You know, Ryan Clark, starting safety, Shaun Suisham, placekicker, and Antwaan Randle El, third wide receiver. Or I might have done a piece about how both the Packers and the Steelers value stability, keeping the same coaching team in place for years, and building gradually through the draft, rather than blowing up the team every few years.
Instead, I feel compelled to write about the commercials.
By tradition, big marketers release clever and even brilliant spots for that huge Super Bowl audience. And tonight so far, one ad – for the Kia Optima being chased through space and time by various villains and mystical creatures – has indeed been brilliant. But too many of the others were not simply bad. They were downright offensive.
Put aside the Chevy Cruze advertisement mocking the faculties of residents of a nursing home. Put aside the multiple spots involving violence. The runner-up for the most offensive was, I think, Doritos “fetish” ad is not even quite describable in a family newspaper. Worst of all was one of the Pepsi Max spots. As a black couple sits on a bench, a blond woman sits nearby. Seeing her man eying the blond, the black woman throws the soda can at his head. He ducks, and the can strikes the blond in the head. She falls to the ground, at which point the black woman grabs her man’s hand, and they both run off.
Okay, maybe as a black man I am biased. Nevertheless, I was horrified by the spot, and I sincerely hope that PepsiCo, whose products I often enjoy, will bury it in some vault, never to be seen again.
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