Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Al Qaeda runs on Starbucks

It's a rare treat to get a truly xenophobic ad. But fortunately, the good people at Dunkin' Donuts were able to fit one into their busy schedule of shitty ad making.

Nice to see the first 23 seconds of a 30-second ad taken up by this pathetic excuse for a song. It doesn't seem to have very many chords, but whatever the number, they've led to an embarrassingly monotone delivery by the singers. You could probably argue that this was intentional, but that just makes it a bad choice. If you're using a song to sell a product, even one that's really just trying to tear down a competitor, couldn't you make it a little more listenable than this? Never mind that some of the things in the song aren't even from other languages (half-caf is an English-language abbreviation, you stupid shits), or for that matter that the people singing are obviously able to pronounce each and every one of the words they suggest are unpronounceable.

Of course the song is far from the commercial's greatest offense. That would be John Goodman's ensuing voiceover:

"Delicious lattes from Dunkin' Donuts. You order them in English, not Fritalian."

(1) implying that using words borrowed from other languages is a bad thing, despite the fact that modern English makes heavy use of loan words
(2) suggesting that Americans have some kind of sacred responsibility to speak English and English alone
(3) forgetting that the word "latte" is itself a "Fritalian" word, even though they included it in their song 20 seconds earlier

Just let the irony of #3 sink in. Ordering lattes in English! Hate to ruin the party, Department of Homeland Donuts, but latte is a shortened version of caffè latte, which is Italian for coffee with milk. Read it and weep, bitches. You can't order a motherfucking latte in English. The person who wrote this ad has an IQ of 38.

Do you think if I go into Dunkin' Donuts and order a "large iced hazelnut milk," that they'll get confused? Because they shouldn't! I'm just ordering in English, like all right-thinking, non-pinko coffee-drinking Americans! If the terrorists want coffee, they can just go to CommieBucks and get their venti mocha half-caf whatevers with all the other beret-wearing, baguette-carrying traitors. America runs on Dunkin!


Windier E. Megatons said...

The song in question was apparently written by They Might Be Giants for this commercial, which makes me sad. If I'd known TMBG needed money that badly, I'd have cut them a check.

Quivering P. Landmass said...

"Fritalian" is a variant on one of the universe's oldest, and lamest, jokes. When I was learning French and interspersing English words, my friends and I used to joke that we were speaking "Franglais." And even as 12-year olds, we didn't think we were original.

Windier E. Megatons said...

Another thing that drives me up a wall is the way in which "Perhaps Fritalian!" is positioned in the song, as though it's some sort of joke or play on words. But it's neither - it's just a lazy combination of two European languages that Americans are apparently too good to speak. TMBG probably shat this one out on a lunch break.