Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Mascot tortures don't upset us

Perhaps this is Burger King's cheeky way of acknowledging the fact that most people are creeped out by the Burger King mascot, but I think even those people were not rooting for him to be murdered.

Long before you get to the point where Burger King is using the contract killing of its corporate mascot for comedy purposes, there are a lot of reasons to despise this ad. Although that's a pretty good one, really.

The graphic "HITMOMS" flashes on the screen

While I will admit to not being sure, I was under the impression that this was the first ad in the series. If that's the case, trying to create a catchy name for these characters is ridiculous. Even if it's not, though, doesn't it seem a little odd to be giving them a cutesy name? "Tee hee! It's funny because seeing 40-something women order a hit is so incongruous! Laffs galore!"

Sally: "You Rick?"
Rick: "Let's not use names."
Sally: "I'm Sally... Jenny... Maggie."

I think she's supposed to be making up pseudonyms. Again, is this something we were supposed to know? I'm forced to assume at this point that this is not in fact the first ad in this series, but it's the first one I've seen, which means Burger King took a risk with this joke; it only makes sense if you've seen previous ads in which names were stated, though I'm now assuming they exist when they might not. Maybe the mom is just supposed to be a dumb broad. Ha ha! She gave their names! Don't send a woman to do a man's job, am I right, fellas?

Rick: "So you wanna whack the King, huh?"
Maggie: "He's got a new Homestyle Melt, on soft buttery bread."

Oh no! Not soft buttery bread! I'm sure it's going to be genuinely soft, and pleasantly buttery - as opposed to "soaked in butter, then left to harden" - because that's how food usually comes off the fast food assembly line, right? How can a homemade sandwich compare with something slapped together by a high school kid making minimum wage that costs three bucks and forces me to drive to get it? Mmmm. Then again, who makes fast-food-style sandwiches at home? Have you ever, in your life, eaten something resembling an Egg McMuffin that wasn't an Egg McMuffin? My mom doesn't have anything in her repertoire that would even begin to resemble the monstrosity advertised here, although there are a lot of different reasons for that.

Rick: "You want it quick and clean, or slow and painful?"

Rick is awfully nonchalant considering how famous his target is, don't you think? Maybe he's secretly an FBI informant. "Yeah, Chief, something about soft buttery bread. I don't know, these bitches are crazy."

Sally: "Take your time."

Score! Aw yeah! The King is going to have his toenails pulled out, you guys!

I mean, why is this funny? Why did Burger King give the green light when their ad agency suggested a campaign based around women who want to see the Burger King get tortured and killed? It seems just a little excessive - not to mention a wee bit distasteful in the current political climate, not to get all Crossfire on you. Although come to think of it, wouldn't a great follow-up ad be one where the King gets waterboarded? Or maybe Sally could slice off the King's ear while "Stuck in the Middle with You" plays in the background. You know, stuff that's funny!

And say there, what exactly is on that sandwich? Oh, it's garlic cheese sauce, bacon, cheese, beef, cheese, beef again, and then yet more cheese at the bottom. Well, I can see why the moms are so angry - they wanted to be the ones to kill their husbands with an 810-calorie sandwich. "It should have been my 58 grams of fat lining his arteries! The King must pay!" That's all in a 221-gram package, by the way. That's right - 26% of this sandwich's weight is fat. Hell, the Baconator is only 18.5% fat! Did Burger King think Wendy's was issuing some kind of "just how fucking disgusting of a sandwich can you make" challenge? Because if so, I think they won. Congratulations, Burger King: you've invented the suitcase nuke of food. I think I might actually want to see the King get tortured now, just for inflicting this thing on the public. Probably not what BK was going for when they ran with the concept.


Quivering P. Landmass said...

This ad is the opposite of a "quick read." They only hint at why the moms want to kill the King. They leave way too much unsaid. Subtlety is not a hallmark of fast food advertising -- and for good reason.

Anonymous said...

I'm just confused. The moms want to kill the Burger King (which is a horrible mascot and probably should be taken out) because of the bread? If it was on a bun would his life be spared? This is too much to take in at 9 in the morning. It's hard to believe that they were able to develop a food product that actually might kill people and get it past the FDA.


c12h22o11 said...

They've actually started running radio ads, in which they've named one of the moms "Dot." Who is named "Dot" anymore??

Anonymous said...

Here is what I wrote to Burger King

"Dear Sirs:

Tonight I saw two Burger King commercials on television which disturbed me. They appeared to advocate violence, even murder. In one, three women are apparently arranging to have your mascot killed by a hired assassin, because his food is better than theirs.

Here in Omaha, we have had thirty homicides this year alone. Our civic leaders are frustrated in their search for solutions to the problem of rampant violence in our community. Meanwhile, your commercials appear to promote socially unacceptable behavior, and I am shocked that you consider this appropriate, even in jest.

Ladies and gentlemen, murder is not funny, it is not a good way to sell food, and should never be promoted as a means to solve a minor domestic problem.

As long as these commercials are on the air, you have lost my business."