Celebri-spiral™: Enough Already

Our culture is in a celebri-spiral. We're conflicted over our ridiculous, growing celebrity culture consumption via magazines, websites, and TV shows. In 2007, my love/hate conflict made me take to the blog-o-sphere. All writing on this site © Dave Singleton 2009.

Sunday, February 4, 2007

February 4, 2007: Stupid Celebrity Superbowl Ads

Apparently, we haven't suffered enough. Not according to some marketing genius who put Kevin Federline in a coveted superbowl ad today, paying him enough money to ensure that he'll still have cab fare to and from paparazzi-laden, D-list swag suites at club promotions and shopping mall kickoffs.

Nationwide Insurance's ad places Kevin in the fast food industry, going from recording studio to flipping burgers. It ties into the company's theme "Life Comes at You Fast." Stupid celebrity ads come at us fast, too.

But obnoxious celebrity ads and antics at the Superbowl are nothing new. I still don't think the country is over Janet Jackson's breast exposure. And I am not sure which recent ad I disliked more: P. Diddy hitchhiking and getting picked up by a suped-up rapper Pepsi truck or Jessica Simpson's mind-numbing and, yes, cheesy, Pizza Hut turn. Of course, there are tons more (what are your least favorites?). But in this age of youtube and 24/7 coverage, they are no longer here for thirty seconds and gone tomorrow. They live on. Lucky us.

When they're offensive, they also draw ire from the offendees, in this case, the National Restaurant Association, which clams that the ad is a "direct insult to the 12.8 million Americans who work in the restaurant industry."

"It's not about Kevin Federline," Chrissy Shott, spokeswoman for the National Restaurant Association, said Wednesday. "It's about the ad."

You almost had me, Christy.
It is about Fed-Ex. He's the epitome of lotto-winning trailer trash, lucky to land in Britney's bed long enough to baby-daddy (OK, OK, legally) a couple of children. And he's the spokesperson for anything even remotely reputable? It's about the ad sponsor, if you ask me. I want to take out a policy from classy Nationwide toot-sweet. Isn't celebrity folly what you want in your insurance company?

Shott says that, based on what she's heard, the ad's depiction of Federline joining the fast-food employment "gives the impression that it's demeaning." Yeah, no kidding. If I worked at Taco Bell, I'd be pissed. It remains to be seen if business will pick up based on K-Fed's big pay day.

Most of the other ads-like Oprah in a Bears shirt, and David Letterman, wearing "Colts," and the heart-tugging Coke ad-were comparatively tame. Did any others bug you?


Blogger Annie & Suz said...

You're spot on with these observations. But, I fail to see that only the fast food industry should be offended by K-Fed appearing in this ad. For all those today that aren't grabbing a chicken wing or beer when this ad invades our living rooms, sports bars and game rooms, will not only be unfortunate souls, but should also take offense. When will this episode of "Trailer Trash Gone Wild" end? It's bad enough that I have to deal with the stalkarazzi following every footstep of the Britney/K-Fed debacle from day one, but now this - an extra :30 of torture today!

I just don't know how much I can handle of seeing and reading about two talentless, tacky individuals.

Ad agencies and big brands need to get back to basics. C'mon now - look at what works - tear a page from Coke, who still holds the helm with the number one Super Bowl ad in history. Even during the Super Bowl, everyone loves a good pull at the heartstring and a tear to the eye.

Take a trip down memory lane...Have a Coke and a Smile


PS: What I really love most about Super Bowl Sunday is that it means the Oscars are only 3 weeks away!

Sunday, February 04, 2007 11:21:00 AM  
Blogger Lisa G said...

Throughout the year, we avoid commercials via TiVo and the mute button. I do not see why an exception should be made for the Superbowl.

On the other hand, Superbowl ads are patriotic things. Without them, these celebrities would have to travel to Japan to make this kind of money shilling products.

Monday, February 05, 2007 9:10:00 AM  
Blogger Cathleen Rittereiser said...

Hey Dave, here's my take on stupid Super Bowl ads. I favor those that lack pride or pretension.


Monday, February 05, 2007 10:34:00 PM  
Blogger Dave Singleton said...

Oh my God, now you totally love Fed Ex don't you, comedy legend?

Monday, February 05, 2007 10:40:00 PM  
Blogger Dave Singleton said...

The two day after fallout seems to be more centered on the possibly homophobic Snickers ad, with the two mechanics kissing over a snickers bar, then needing to do something uber manly to prove non-gayness afterwards.

My take? The snickers Superbowl ad was offensive but there were no celebrities in it, so who cares? It will be pulled, never hear from again and the company will ride it out.

Bottom line: it's easier to get over an ad without a celebrity attached.

Thursday, February 08, 2007 12:21:00 AM  

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