Hey guys! You know what I, as a man, can't stand? Listening to women. Like, about anything, ever, particularly if some form of sporting event might be on in the immediate vicinity. And especially because women never have anything important to say. Why would they? They're women! If a woman is talking to me and I'm listening to her it's due to one of three reasons: (a) she's asking me what I want her to cook me for dinner; (b) she's telling me how her bra unhooks; or (c) I'm going to get a Klondike bar (manliest food on the planet!) as a reward.
Now who can't relate to that?
Announcer: "New Klondike Mint Chocolate Chip bars present: Five Seconds to Glory! Mark versus Actually Listening to His Wife!"
At least this isn't one of those ads where the guy with utter contempt for his wife's presence is also married to someone who is way too hot for him. Minor point in Klondike's favor.
Wife: "...beautiful, beautiful yellow squash. And I thought, we could potentially paint our foyer yellow. What do you think? I know, it's yellow, I know..."
Mark: [jumps up] "YEAAAHHH!!!"
[confetti falls, models run in]
Jingle: "What would you do-o-o for a Klondike Bar?"
In addition to the obvious problems with the depiction of a relationship in this scene, isn't this just dumb? I mean, has anyone ever had to do less for a Klondike bar? Yet it's treated like Mark is having acupuncture on his penis or something. Oh man, listening to a woman for five seconds, you guys! That shit is hard! Because women, you know? They're like all boring and stuff. Unless they're models who bring you ice cream and don't talk.
I'm sure this post will yet again get me accused of having no sense of humor, as though "having a sense of humor" requires finding anything funny as long as it's trying to be. Sorry - this is a major failure. Let's ignore the ridiculously casual sexism for a minute - what exactly is "funny" about this commercial? The only possible "punchline" is Mark's wildly outsized celebration at accomplishing an incredibly easy task. But here's the thing - the commercial does not present the task as incredibly easy. It implies that it's difficult; Mark's facial expression suggests that it's difficult; and given that Mark is rewarded with the sponsoring product, this certainly suggests that Klondike is of the opinion that this is a difficult challenge. In other words, Mark is given a tough task, achieves it, and celebrates. That isn't humor. The only real "humor" is intended to come from the hilarity of Mark having to "actually listen to his wife" for five seconds - because if your wife is talking to you, it's boring and inconsequential, and thus paying attention to her is just all kinds of a chore. Haw! This brings us back around to the "sexism" part on the Möbius strip of shittiness that is this ad.
And if you still can't see the sexist subtext (though I hesitate to even call it subtext) in this spot, watch this other Klondike ad and tell me it doesn't have a homophobic subtext. Then tell me you'd put sexism past the troglodytes in charge of marketing at Klondike. The hilarious part is that, as a chocolate-and-ice-cream confection, doesn't it seem like Klondike should be advertising to women as much as men? It's not like they're advertising beef jerky or energy drinks or something that has a market of mostly 18-49 males. Instead, here's Klondike dumping all over at least half of its potential audience. Good work, guys.