Sunday, December 27, 2009

For the love of Carl's J

Things Kim Kardashian is famous for:

(1) Having an abnormally large ass
(2) Having a sex tape
(3) Having an unwatchable reality show about her annoying family
(4) Dating NFL "star" Reggie Bush

If you can think of how one of those connects to salad, I'm all ears.

This is, of course, the same company that figured Paris Hilton washing a car was a good way to sell a hamburger, or that professional mannequin Audrina Patridge was a good spokesperson. I'm not necessarily surprised that their latest pitch involves a more or less attractive woman who really should not be famous at all. That's apparently their thing. But that doesn't make it any less annoying.

Kim Kardashian: "I'm such a neat freak. Everything's gotta be clean, crisp and tasty."

What? This copy makes no sense. Also, what kind of neat freak fucking eats a salad in bed and/or with their fingers? Fuck you, Carl's Jr. ad writers.

Also, when your pitchwoman is most famous for having a sex tape, do you really want to go here:

Oh, you do? Okay. Mmm, jizzed-on apples. Delicious.

(To go off-topic for just a minute, here's an underrated fact about the whole sex tape thing: neither Kim Kardashian nor her sex-tape paramour Ray J were particularly famous. Usually people notice/care about sex tapes when they star people who are already famous, like Pamela Anderson or Rob Lowe. But Kardashian and Ray J were not really famous. If anything, they both had small amounts of fame, but only for having connections to much more famous people; Kardashian was a socialite friend of Paris Hilton's - someone else whose fame springs heavily from a sex tape - and Ray J is the brother of singer Brandy. Then they made a sex tape and somehow both of them got TV shows out of it. The math on that is a little weird, right? But I digress.)

Kim: "And while the best things in life are messy..."

Uh... I don't even know what to say about this. Let's just move on.

Kim: "It's fun to get clean." [gets into bathtub]

This is basically nudity-free pornography at this point, isn't it? How can the FCC even justify letting Carl's Jr. run this on television? On the one hand, okay, there's certainly no nudity or bad language, and you could argue that any children who are young enough such that this ad is "inappropriate" for them simply won't see the innuendo in things like a drop of glistening translucent salad dressing falling within inches of Kim Kardashian's cleavage.

On the other hand, the dialogue makes no sense and is completely inconsistent. As a result, the ad can't claim to be doing anything other than trying to sell a salad by introducing sex into the mix. Why, here comes the tagline:

Announcer: "Who said salads can't be hot?"

Well, I can't say I would recommend eating a fully-dressed salad (a) in bed, (b) in the bathtub, or (c) with your fingers. So if that's what it takes to make a salad "hot," I guess I'm saying salads can't be hot.

Announcer: "The new Cranberry Apple Walnut Grilled Chicken Salad... one of three new premium salads at Carl's Jr."

Wait a minute. You would have to assume that an ad like this is built to appeal to men (specifically heterosexual men). And what they're selling is a cranberry apple walnut salad? Not to stereotype, but come on, that is approximately the least manly salad imaginable. This ad, which implicitly compares a woman eating an apple slice to oral sex, cannot possibly be aimed at women, even though they are the clear market for such a salad. The burger commercials at least made sense from this standpoint - the guys watching can (theoretically) drool over the hot chick in the bikini while also getting excited for the enormous burger she's eating.

But this is a salad. The kind of guy who is watching an ad like this and thinking about going to Carl's Jr. because he likes big butts and cannot lie is probably not the kind of guy who is going to Carl's Jr. for a salad. And even if he were, making your salad dressing visually recall semen is not the way to get him in the door.


Quivering P. Landmass said...

Eating a dressed salad with your fingers has to be the grossest way to sell food we've seen here in a long time.

danarch said...

"Mmm, jizzed-on apples." This is the quote of the remainder of 2009. I was drinking something too when I read this line and now you owe me a new keyboard.

Jeremy said...

Did you guys see this list? What are your thoughts?|main|dl1|link1|

Any chance we'll get a worst-of-the-decade post from you yet?

Jeremy said...

link rather

Anonymous said...

Have y'all seen that Dominos pizza commercial where they basically say their pizza up till now sucked? What is up with that?

Knitwear M. Groundhog said...

Dominos is just saying what everyone's thinking. (That having been said, I never had a problem with their thin crust, just the terrible, terrible hand tossed.)

Windier E. Megatons said...

I was actually thinking earlier today about some sort of decade recap, but ultimately I don't think we'd do a ten-worst list, for a few reasons. For one thing, we've already written about pretty much all of the really awful ones we've seen, so we'd just be repeating ourselves. And then trying to track down the worst ads from 2000-2006 would either be too difficult or lead us to rely on someone else's opinion at first, which I don't like to do.

The good news is that five of the ads in that worst list that you linked are ads we've already written about! So in case anyone missed them the first time, here were our takes on what at least one other person agrees were some of the worst ads of the decade:

White Castle Pig

Skittles Midas Touch

Quizno's Oven

SalesGenie Pandas (part of our 2008 Super Bowl post)

Visa Check Card (frankly, I'm amazed someone else bothered to pick on this one)

ben said... conducted a study among 300 viewers of the new Carl’s Jr. ad featuring Kim Kardashian. Results showed that the majority of female respondents (69%) indicated that they found the ad at least somewhat offensive or inappropriate. Also, while men’s perception of the Carl’s Jr. brand increased in favorability after viewing the video, women’s perception of the brand became less favorable after watching the ad. More in depth results can be seen at:

Jen said...

Most advertisers assume that all women are lesbians. So really, it makes perfect sense.