Most TV ads are just a nuisance, with some being annoying or awful, for one reason or another and a very few being enjoyable and entertaining. Last month though I saw one that I found simply shocking, nasty and offensive: a couple getting ready for work in the morning were attempting to kill one another. The reason? To get the keys to a car.
I didn’t do anything about it, but I’m glad to say that 17 people complained to the Advertising Standards Authority, who have now found the ad to be
offensive and malicious. It’s now off the air:
“They decided that it was a breach of the codes, particularly in relation to the issue of safety and also in relation to offensiveness due to the level of domestic violence in the ad,” says Hilary Souter from the ASA.
The ASA upheld complaints that the ad:
- Sent an inappropriate message to children.
- Was not socially responsible.
- Would encourage similar behaviour.
This is a worry though:
The irony is that while the RAV4 advert may have been missed the mark with the advertising watchdog it was a smash hit with the viewers, with an industry survey ranking it easily the most popular ad in March.
On the other hand there are and have been some great ads around. The ‘bugger’ ad still makes me laugh, in spite of an implied very unpleasant bit in the middle. The gently humorous ongoing bumblings of Ira Goldstein investigating the ASB bank for his American boss are always worth a smile. The seagulls on the Lynx ferry were also smile-worthy. I always also liked the polar bear pretending to be a penguin for the Bluebird chips and the current ‘bulls‘ ad.
Oh, and if anyone can point me to an online video of the polar bear ad, mentioned above, I’d be very grateful.