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Adweek is reporting this Snickers spot has been pulled by Mars in the U.K. after critics called it homophobic. Get with the times, Mr. T. It is not okay to shoot ANYONE with a Snicker’s gun. Agency: AMV BBDO.
well isn’t the fact that “critics” connected homosexuality to speed walking the offensive part?
It’s either that or they have a man crush on Mr. T and the sight of him with a big nut launching gun arouses them so much, they had to get it pulled from the air.
Or it’s just a PR stunt for a commercial that was simply being ignored.
Okay, I may be walking a line here, but I’m getting a little tired of hearing about campaigns getting pulled due to fear of homophobia.
Last time I checked, all speedwalkers were not gay. Nike was similarly forced into submission recently and pulled an outdoor board that featured a guy getting dunked on by another dude. The reason? One’s face was smashed into the others crotch.
As a guy who has played a lifetime of basketball, I can safely say that I have, on at least one occasion, suffered an identical humiliation at the hands of a higher-flying opponent.
But that makes neither one of us gay. Am I missing something?
It’s completely retarded – I agree with Gregg. Nothing in the ad suggested the speed walker was gay. Stupid.
The same fate as the mechanic one from last years Super Bowl, but for the opposite reason. :( That was my favorite commercial that year.
Maybe it got pulled because people are finally growing tired of hearing Mr. T say “I pity the fool.” I know I am.
The guy this ad is attacked for not running “like a real man.”
Ads like this validate the idea that it’s okay to commit acts of violence against sissies, faggots and anyone whose masculinity or gender expression may be questioned.
Unfortunately, violence against LGBT people really happens. Two examples happened in Greeley, Colo. just this month.
A Greeley cop was involved in an anti-gay beating and a transgendered girl was murdered.
Of course, it’s a stretch to say that ads directly cause violence. But they clearly contribute to a cultural environment that legitimizes antigay abuse.
Andy: With due recognition that horrific acts continue against the LGBT community, I maintain that there is a point where the net of homophobia is cast so wide as to marginalize the severity of true and obvious acts of discrimination.
I really don’t believe the creators of the Nike or Snickers work intended to demean the gay community.
Shouldn’t all white males be offended? Or all speedwalkers, or all short shorts wearers? While it is debatable whether that speedwalker is gay or not, he definitely fits these former categories.
In the end, it’s just comedy. There has to be a fall guy. It can’t be blacks, latinos, homosexuals or women. So I guess the white macho heterosexual male is the only acceptable one now.
Can’t we stop trying to draw the lines and just all be humans?
I’m a big fan of politically incorrect humor. But this ad offers a tacit thumbs up to scare, tease, and beat up people who don’t meet a pointless standard of masculinity.
And who’s telling us this? A global brand and a television icon.
The ad clearly crosses a line and people are calling it homophobic. I agree that the term is problematic. But we lack a more precise word to describe attacking someone for a perceived lack of masculinity.
Aside from this case, I’m not aware of a wide net of things being labeled homophobic when they don’t clearly involve an LGBT person. (I don’t listen to conservative talk radio).
But I like your idea of “just being human.” Especially if that means we stop dehumanizing people for expressing their gender — wherever it falls on the continuum of masculinity and femininity.
i’d like to point out and important fact:
mr. t does not have a track record of discrimination when it come to busin’ fools’ heads.
“‘Sissies’ appeared early on in Hollywood as stock characters for comic relief. Effeminate men were already a figure of fun to the American public, and everyone instinctively understood who they were. The sissy made everyone feel more manly or womanly be filling the space inbetween.” – Film/Book The Celluloid Closet (Trailer: http://www.imdb.com/video/screenplay/vi2576744729/).
Ah the sissy. Always good for a laugh or to sell peanuts and chocolate.
What I find most visually powerful and insidious in this ad is that gay people are often harassed and threatened by people anonymously yelling “faggot” (“Be a man”) out their car windows. It’s a far too powerful image to be taken casually.
Whether intentional or not, overt or through their subtext, ads that perpetuate stereotypes, homophobia, etc. should be pulled. Advertisers and their creatives teams have an obligation to be sensitive to how minority communities are represented.
I suspect that BBDO and Snickers were well aware of the range of reaction this ad would receive. The vetting process for releasing work is deep. It’s a shame they decided to air the ad anyway.
For you creatives out there, here’s a good resource: http://www.commercialcloset.org/
The CC website has a large database of mainstream ads that represent the LGBT community. Included ads are reviewed as “positive,” “negative,” “caution,” or “equal.”
I agree with both Andy and David. Had the actor in the ad not been overtly effeminate and had Mr. T not said “You a disgrace to the man race. It’s time to run like a real man” and had Mr. T not fired on the speedwalker with a paintball machine gun, then the ad would have been fine and perfectly acceptable. However, if the ad didn’t have those 3 things, it would’ve been a completely different ad entirely and we wouldn’t be having this discussion.
The recently-pulled Nike print campaign was open to a broader interpretation, but in the end was probably too controversial to remain as well.
Have ad agencies run out of ideas to the point that they have to dip into the oh-so-easy well of degrading minorities and people who don’t act or behave “normal”? I’ll group the Miller Lite “Man Law” ads in with Snickers and Nike too. Just plain silly and exploitative.
quote: ads that perpetuate stereotypes…. this should say.. brands that perpetuate stereotypes..
what about all the cleaning products that just cast women using them to clean-up after their men and families? And the part that gets me… these women usually .. and very clearly have never had kids.. they smile about it while they clean.. they’re young… hot.. but not too hot.. you know.. some sex appeal but not too over the top…
my wife hates cleaning-up after anyone.. don’t we all.. and can bet you a million bucks… most men do their fair share.. but you don’t see Mr. T shooting snicker bars at me for loading the dishwasher tonight.. or mopping the floors after our four-year-old spilled juice everywhere.. it’s a changed world.. why haven’t our brands changed to reflect it? Let me guess… let’s appeal to women without alienating men trick..
its a joke, like HAHA funny, get a life and stop find things to whine about
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