Douchebag Decree: Super Bowl Commercials
Before each Super Bowl, we see media obsess over two things: commercials and halftime performances. And this year was no different, especially with her majesty Beyonce giving what was arguably the best halftime show in the history of the human race.
As for the commercials, many will never be considered the best in history. Yesterday, Bitch intern Emilly Prado sounded off about the game's string of sexist commercials. Today, we're declaring that several Super Bowl commercials that didn't land in our "top five most sexist" picks instead succeed at redefining 'douchebag' for other reasons. Let's hear it for Coke, Audi, and VW!
"The Prom" presents us with the underdog who never gets the girl. But luckily, privileged enough to have access to a new, shiny Audi! He drives it to Prom, parks in the Principal's parking spot (because being "the man" means you have access to everything) and walks straight up to the Prom Queen on the dance floor. Without even a word of consent, he jabs his tongue down her throat.
The commercial ends with him leaving with a black-eye from the Prom King, but smiling, obviously proud of what just happened.
So in summary: if you buy an Audi, feel free start making out with her, no consent necessary, consequences be damned! Now that's romance.
Coke: "The Chase"
"The Chase" opens with a group of Arab men walking their camels towards a gigantic Coke bottle in the desert, but are quickly passed by cowboys, some extra's from the film Mad Max and then showgirls on a bus. The group of Arab men struggle to get their camels to move, because silly them! They don't have the convenience of popular Western modes of transportation! Arabs are out-dated camel riders! Who wants a Coke?!
The commercial continues with everyone in the race, besides the original Arab men who have been literally left in the dust. In the end, no one wins but rather the race has to continue for another 50 miles.
Also, beyond this racism, I'd argue that this commercial rips off the bus full of drag queens in "Priscilla: Queen of the Desert." You may be wondering why they didn't use drag queens? Well, because Coke probably didn't think America could deal with men in dresses instead of uniforms. So, instead they served up some good ole' fashion racism.
Volkswagen: "Get Happy"
This commercial presents the idea that YOU TOO can be happy if you drive a VW Bug, because it will miraculously make you speak with a Jamaican accent and be super chillll and happy, man.
NYTimes columnist Charles Blow called this technique of mimicking an ethnic accent "blackface with voices," which were my thoughts exactly. Plus, the idea of Jamaicans being senselessly laid-back and happy is a stereotype that reinforces a misconception that Jamaicans are just bud-smoking, lazy folks who walk through life stoned and smiling. VW failed with this one—I was left feeling angry, not happy.
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