_______________, we have a problem

The Super Bowl has inspired me.

I don’t plan on switching electricity providers or downloading more Beyonce anthems, but I have been encouraged to write a bit about a problem that permeates our society.

I’m thinking about a few of the commercials (which each cost about $2.5 million to air throughout the SB) that struck me as less tasteful than rice cakes.

Example A: This is a joke right? Is this supposed to be considered “creative”? Why do I think there’s something wrong with this picture? This reinforces so many stigmas that our generation–and those younger than us–face each day. The woman is blonde, thin, beautiful and over-the-top poised. The guy is what Go Daddy assumes to be…well, nerdy. And what’s really going on when they’re kissing? Did the sound guy switch mics with the intern drinking a slurpie? This was a pathetic attempt at humor. And it was uncomfortable.

Example B: So the whole baking theme and the music tie in pretty flawlessly. But let me share with you what I witnessed while watching this commercial in Buffalo Wild Wings. I’m facing the TV and in my direct line of vision is a table with around 6 teenage boys. Clearly, they’re freaking out. I mean…why wouldn’t they? However, isn’t this setting them up for failure? Poles don’t magically appear for girls to hop on–unless you patron strip clubs frequently. Do what you have to do.

My point is that young girls watching this shit assume that this is what guys their age want and expect. I’m lucky enough to have been blessed with self-confidence, but too often young women aren’t encouraged to pursue anything other than being pretty.

Example C: Men are victims too, y’all. If I saw this man in real life, I’m not sure what I would do. I can fantasize about being super confident and whatnot, but that wouldn’t be the case. He’s just too…he’s basically the modern Adonis. Why is this a problem? Let’s be realistic here. No man I know personally looks like that. (Which I’m grateful for; those high cheek bones are intimidating.) The men I know and find attractive aren’t perfect, but who is?

While young girls are battling their self-esteem problems, young men are too. It’s encouraged that they be alpha males in every situation, which isn’t fair. 

Some were genuinely funny. This one reminds me of The Sandlot meets Hot Rod. I just wish the dad would have been driving the Santa Fe. Come on, Hyundai. Mom is so cliche. And Brotherhood is bound to make you tear up. (You don’t have to admit it, though.)

Kids watch the Super Bowl because they known it’s important. Parties are centered around it; sometimes lives are even centered around it. Why don’t we keep making commercials with actual substance instead of sex? How about we increasingly acknowledge that many Americans won’t be able to talk about the game face-to-face with their families/loved ones? You go Jeep and you go Oprah.

Let’s be smarter America. We are the greatest nation, after all.

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3 thoughts on “_______________, we have a problem

  1. I applaud your passion for more purity, but I fear the commercial industry – in bed both literally and figuratively with the sports and entertainment industry – is simply too far gone. Your best bet is to do what my wife and I have done for the 20+ years of raising our children – boycott television. Folk singer John Prine said it best over 40 years ago in his song “Spanish Pipedream”.

    Blow up your TV throw away your paper
    Go to the country, build you a home
    Plant a little garden, eat a lot of peaches
    Try and find Jesus on your own

    • I have faith that creative minds have the ability to change the face of advertising. Will it happen this year? Probably not. Maybe that’s naive/idealistic, but I know that we are capable of better.

      I’ll have to listen to that song!

      • I wish you well in your endeavor to effect change in advertising. As for the Prine song – here is a video of him doing it back in his prime (1985) –

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