Thursday, April 30, 2009

NASCAR TV And "Square Booty" Not Mixing Well


When Burger King switched to the new creepy King as their spokesman, it certainly was a radical change for the fast-food giant. The new advertising spokesman was a real man with a huge headpiece that made him a cross between a junior college mascot and a bad Halloween costume.

Now, there is a new ad campaign involving Burger King that has upset some NASCAR fans. Most of them are female and they have been making their views known across the Internet and also in the TDP emailbox.

Click here for an article from AdWeek about the new TV advertisements. Somehow, Burger King has crossed SpongeBob SquarePants with Sir Mix-A-Lot and come up with one of the most tasteless commercials in recent history.

The ads are actually promoting the Burger King giveaway of a SpongeBob toy. That simple message, however, is wrapped in an endless procession of dancing young women bending over to show their square-butts. For those old enough to remember the original Sir Mix-A-Lot video from 17 years ago, the BK version is certainly...interesting.

The topper is the creepy Burger King himself who wanders around with a measuring stick and at one point measures two big square-butts. Remember, this is a giveaway of a free toy for children, not an adult product or service. This commercial is supposedly aimed at the kids who watch SpongeBob and their parents. Needless to say, the complaints have been piling up.

Here is the official Burger King response:

"This commercial is intended to show that even adults can have fun, laugh and be silly with entertainment genres -- such as rap and pop-culture icons -- that have become part of everyday life."

That explanation might fly if not for the ill-advised conclusion of the commercial. Sir Mix-A-Lot makes a cameo appearance and utters the now infamous line that pushed many parents over the edge and put Burger King on the hotseat.

"Booty is booty," says the now 45 year-old former producer and rapper. That sound you hear is the official BK explanation crashing to earth.

In the Sunday Talladega race, the commercial spot in question aired on Fox multiple times. While the ad does not violate any broadcast TV guidelines, it certainly sends multiple mixed messages depending on the age and sex of the TV viewer watching it.

NASCAR has long prided itself on having a significant amount of female fans and works very hard to keep them. Many purchasing decisions are generated by the female head of the household and product loyalty is a term that NASCAR promotes at every opportunity.

Perhaps, dancing women in spandex with phonebooks in their shorts are not exactly the way to motivate adult female NASCAR fans to go to Burger King.

The adult references in the ad are also heard by young NASCAR TV fans who only know SpongeBob as a funny cartoon character who makes them laugh.

Either way, NASCAR TV continues to offer the phonebook shaking booty queens on a regular basis in racing content and NASCAR-themed shows. It seems the only real way the effectiveness of the ad campaign is going to be measured is at the front counters and drive-thru's of Burger Kings nationwide.

TDP welcomes comments from readers. Just click on the comments button below to add your opinion on this topic. This is a family-friendly website, please keep that in mind when posting.

Thanks for taking time out of your day to stop by The Daly Planet.

90 comments:

glenc1 said...

ooh, I'm on first, lol. You know, when I first read about this controversy, it was parents who were upset at showing a kid cartoon link mixed with the 'booty'--I didn't get that women seemed to be the ones complaining. Regardless, BK claiming it's aimed at adults is ridiculous when it is entirely built around a kid's cartoon (aren't they actually giving away the kid's meal with an adult meal purchase?) Anyway, it's no worse than a million other ads in terms of the booty, (which is actually covered with the square pants, so to speak);) my objection is mixing it with kids' stuff--just strikes me as an inappropriate mix, pun intended. But if it sells meals, they won't care.

Dot said...

@ JD, THANK YOU for this column.

The king is creepy for so many reasons. His commls even before this one came on creeped me out. In bed with a guy. The stripper pole. UGH. I will say the best one was when those women were trying to run him over. Too bad they missed.

Supposedly there are two versions of this comml, one for adults the other for kids. Since I don't watch kid's TV anymore I haven't seen the other one.

Who's in charge of BKs ad campaign? Who thinks this is funny/clever?

Another bad comml is the Quizzno's one with the torpedo sandwich. Oh, don't get me started.

I just had a thought. These commls must be doing something right since we are going to be talking about it. Isn't that the idea?
However, I will not eat at BK as long as the king is in their commls.

Vicky D said...

My hubby said he (we) will no longer eat at BK, qlthough we don't usually eat at fastfood restaurants, those commercials for the booty are terrible. I think previous ad campaigns were funny but this one HAS GOT TO GO.

glenc1 said...

Vicki, that's along the lines of what I was thinking...that plenty of *men*, especially parents, would find this just as offensive as women. All I can think is that these ads are chosen by 23 year old boys who never grew up.

Sophia said...

@Dot

I second your comments even tho I don't think I have seen the other BK adds (stripper pole are you KIDDING me? Not seen the torpedo sandwich either.)

I have so many commercial rants these days..some which I mentioned during the IRL race (YIKES!)

darbar said...

This is just a continuation of tasteless commercials that are inundating the airwaves. You've got the male enhancement commercials (Smilin' Bob is the biggest doofuss), the pleasure enhancement informercials at 3am, female chest enhancement, and now BK. Give me the cute toilet paper puppy at the spa any day.

Anonymous said...

People need to calm down. I think the commercials are stupid, but if you don't like them, change the channel. Oh, I forgot, most parents today hold everyone else responsible for the things their kids do wrong. Stop sitting your kids in front of the TV and go for a walk. That way you won't have to worry about seeing the commercial and you can work off a little of the square booty you got from eating too many Bon Bons while not spending time with your child. Or, how about reading to your child, rather than letting them rot in front of the TV. Too many studies have been done showing that not only is the TV not providing anything short of a little quiet for a parent, but the DVD's they make that supposedly make kids smarter don't work either. And while we're at it, how about not letting them take their Game Boy into a restaurant. How about teaching them that there are times to play and there are times to sit and behave? The parenting community of America is more to blame for our failing children than the public school system. Then again, last NASCAR race I went to, a father proudly marched around with his son, who was wearing a "Gordon Swallows" t-shirt.

Anonymous said...

I hate the commercial, but lighten up. No one is forcing anyone to watch--just use the censorship knob on your TV.

Anonymous said...

It's a stupid commercial, poor marketing, horrible branding. GREAT opportunity for a bathroom break! I choose that option every time it comes on. MUTE goes the TV, and I'm off to the bathroom and don't miss a thing :-)

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anons,

I don't really think your comments hold any water unless you identify yourself by age and sex.

What a 15 year-old boy thinks is funny might not fly with the 35+ female fan. Even if she is mom.

JD

Anonymous said...

Why is there a rather eye-pleasing Miss Sprint Cup in victory lane every week?

By allowing sponsorships by hard liquor, beer, tobacco products and ED drugs, NASCAR has given up any right to claim they want family friendly TV commercials.

Jen said...

I don't have a problem with this commercial because I'm a woman. I have a problem with it because I'm a parent, just as my husband has the same problem. My 4-year-old son loves NASCAR and watches races with me...and what idiot thinks a "man" measuring women's rear-ends is family friendly? It was bad enough when I only had to turn off the TV when they showed men discussing erectile dysfunction, or any commercial with Danica Patrick stripping, but it's getting to the point where the TV will just be off completely during the races.

In the meantime, it'll be a cold day in Hell before Burger King sees any of my money.

Anonymous said...

That "measuring stick" sure looks like a level. (But I couldn't POSSIBLY be right if I'm posting anonymously!)

Daly Planet Editor said...

So, you wasted a comment on that? How about your opinion?

The J said...

the commercials dont affect whether or not i will buy the product, and i understand why theyre offensive to some. im not saying i think this commercial is funny, actually i think its a lame attempt at being funny, but they dont offend me. why? i look away during the commercials anyway. i can understand some people have little kids who they cant keep from looking away though. nascar cant do a thing about it. they cant say dont run this ad on our races, cause the company will show it elsewhere, and nascar cant afford to lose advertisers. just like all commercials, this one will go away soon.

Anonymous said...

Very tasteless commercial I agree, but it is a level and not a ruler, don't think he is measuring anything, but showing that the ahem's are square. I hate the commercial though.

Sophia said...

The coarsening of society is lost on many. Some of us just have higher standards apparently and glad everybody I know and hang with does as well.

We shouldn't be ambushed watching sports like racing or golf with the commercials mentioned.

Darbar I remember when the Mark Eden Bust Developer was quietly sold in the back of MANY magazines in the 70's. Today's version shows a LIVE moving female demo sure to be popular with men and boys.

I still can't believe the makers of Sponge Bob ok'd this commercial to be part of their merchandising promotion.

And don't even get me started on Smiling Bob and 'those commercials'.

NASCAR offended many when M Martin drove the "V" car!

glenc1 said...

I didn't have an issue when Mark drove the V car. Cause back then it was a 'health' issue, as they marketed it. Not so now. But Sophia, you make an excellent point about the Sponge Bob people giving permission. What were they thinking? And again, I don't find it offensive, I find the *joining* of the kids' cartoon and the square booties wrong.

But should we be ambushed during baseball or football either.....? Don't think there's a difference.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Thanks, there are lots of folks wondering where this trend will end.

Marketing SpongeBob toys to small children at BK with this ad?

That is what we would like you to focus your comments on.

Thanks as always,

JD

Dot said...

The king is creepy. No other word (that I could use here) describes him. And yes, anon I do mute or change the channel.

I pity the parents whose little kids are running around the house singing that they like big butts. Back when my daughter was 2-3 yrs old, it was the Cops theme. And again anon, I read to and walked with her.

@ dear Sophia, Mark Martin and Viagra was how we had the sex talk with our curious 7 yr old (she was Mark's fan then and still is). Kept it on her level. We still laugh about it 11 yrs later.

@ glenc1 7:09pm, agreed.

Anonymous said...

At one point last week, BK said they were going to pull the ad. I guess that changed.

BTW, watched Talladega with two women who are also race fans. They found the spot tasteless and a little insulting.

Sophia said...

Glen

no to baseball and football as well...just used what I watch or what my 88 year old mother watches. She's pretty sharp and has strong opinions...(shocks you all I know)

Spongebob Cartoon makers allowing this is what is mind boggling? I always thought that was a tame cartoon. Perhaps it's gone adult like Simpsons and those other cartoons.

I'm a purist for old Tom & Jerry myself with Fred Quimby producing and Music of Scott Bradley.

We just didn't have to worry so much about "adult subjects" back then. Gone from one extreme to the other.

Is Spongebob still ON tv and will parents raise cane with the sponsors of that cartoon?

Lots going on with big news this week or I would think one of the talking heads on Cable News would be bringing up this tasteless cartoon.

Sounds like something Bill O and Dennis Miller might discuss some night.

HOW LONG has this commercial been running?

Dot said...

@ anon 11:06, The comml that was pulled was not shown in the US. It had something to do with cowboys and someone with a Mexican looking flag. When I first read the headline I thought it would be the one we're discussing here. No such luck.

SpongeBob appeals to a vast age group. My teen aged nephew watches it, and so does my 3 yr niece. I'll have to ask them if they like the king comml. I'm hoping not.

@ dear Sophia, too long.

Gymmie said...

@Sophia--yup Spongebob is still on and I think they have some new ones spread in there. I think Thursday or Fridays was when they were doing the new ones.

I'm not sure exactly how long it's been around but I found out about it a few weeks ago reading one of my fitness forums. The person who started the thread titled it something along the lines of "Squarebutts are in" with a linky to the Youtube long version.

When I saw it I was like does Sir need money *that* badly, everyone else is making a come back I'm sure he could too. And I was shaking my head at the Nickelodeon folks approving this.

The Track Girl said...

I personally hate this commercial. One for all around horribleness, two for the twisted marketing for both children and Sir Mix A lot fans. (are there any still? Apparently you can find them at BK)
And three for the fact that I have to sit through it while the race is on.

I love clever commercials, I hate bs (can I say that here?) like this. On the other hand. Look. They got what they wanted. Everyone is talking about them.
Maybe its a bigger deal if he is on a car with the square-butts. Until then, I think its just one more crummy part of NASCAR not understanding what their fans want.

PS. I hate the "King" so much. He's terribly creepy. And creepier now that we know he thinks square-butts are sexy(?!). yeech.

Anonymous said...

On the other hand. Look. They got what they wanted. Everyone is talking about them.

No, talk is not what they wanted. They didn't pay millions of dollars just to have people talk about the spot.

They want you to go in and buy their product. If people don't do that, then the commercial was not successful.

Sophia said...

yea even without the square booty thing, that is one creepy king!

Can't believe this commercial ran more than a couple of weeks and not getting media attention. From parents screaming.

Photojosh said...
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Tony Solorzano said...

You know the really sad irony of this all is that you just know Dave would have probably come out with some big ol' rant that would have both defended Burger King's right to advertise how they saw fit, while at the same time finding the perfect way to not only skewer that creepy King but also the company for the commercial itself.

That just reminded me of a funny that not only made Dave laugh but also ticked him off that he missed it. It was the weekend of the Spring race in Fontana, the first one after Dennis Bickmeier, the long-time Director of Media Relations, had left for a position with Brenner-Zweikel and Associates. They had brought in the King to the media center because BK was sponsoring a driver that weekend and they passed out these $5 gift cards and Halloween-style King masks.

I ended up with one of those masks and as a joke I put it on as I was leaving the media center, and went to the front to say goodbye to a couple of friends who work there. As it turned out the woman who succeeded Dennis turned the corner and literally fell to the floor laughing after being scared by my wearing the mask and waving slowly.

Daly Planet Editor said...

josh,

Try again and change some words my friend.

JD

Daly Planet Editor said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I just saw the commercial tonight. The BK King has a very strange image for a company. He's been a Peeping Tom, and stalker, etc. Kinda bizarre. The booty commercial is just another BK oddity.

I'm a woman and I didn't find it particularly offensive but I don't take commercials all that seriously, nor do I think kids are going to scarred for life by it.

red said...

sometimes, it makes me wonder. . .
i just asked our 17 year old daughter what she thinks of the commercial as she was a big spongebob fan. her answer: " i dunno, i've only seen it once."

and to me, that's telling: she's only seen it once and she watches a fair amount of tv at different hours of the day. and i know why.

for some of us who are older, there was a time when one had to get up, cross the room and physcally change the channel on a tv. in my large family, that tedious task fell to me as the youngest (back then, we often watched tv as a family.) as a result, it was easier to sit thru commercials instead of getting up and changing channels and channel hopping was, by extension, rare.

for my children, the reality is starkly different. they rarely watch an entire run of commercials during any program and both daughters are fast on the remote when commercials appear. they're now 17 and 22 but when they were younger, they knew the jingles and sang them incessantly. they weren't big tv watchers, both preferring to read/be read to or play but once they latched on to a commercial, it was an earwig for weeks.

that being said: i don't understand this particular commercial at all. it's supposed to be marketing a kid's meal at bk, right? so, what part of it is intended to appeal to kids? the dancing? the king? the small insert of a spongebob clip? i don't see it. will this commercial have kids running to mom or dad and pleading to go to bk? i seriously doubt that. in fact, i'm not convinced kids can tease out the spongebob message in that ad enough to make the connection between bk and the tv show.

what bk has done is create a commercial that tries far too hard to "make a point" instead of selling a product to a consumer. but if the point is so obtuse as to create a product confusion, then said point has been lost in the mix.

final point: when a commercial would come on that we, as parents, didn't like, we either turned OR we were vocal about what we found obnoxious so that our daughters would hear our opinions about it. that gave them the clear message that we didn't like it for specific reasons.

(and i have long thought that the bk king commercials are horrendous and trying to the nth degree. but the again, i'm not their demographic.)

yankeegranny said...

The only place I saw that piece of garbage was during the race. I immediately e-mailed Burger King and told them I would no longer buy their products because of their tasteless commercials. Of course, the majority of their products are tasteless, so what do we really expect?

Ken said...

Wonder if the outfit that dreamed up digger also dreamed up the BK commercial? They both are using kuvenile characters to promote and sell on an adult sport show. They are apparently buying into the steriotype of the NA$CAR fan. If the square butt would sit on digger, we might all feel better.

Anonymous said...

Get over it. It's stupid, It's annoying. but so is the entire Faux broadcast. Their run is about over, & this commercial too will pass.

dawg

Greg said...

JD hit the nail on the head when he said:

"They want you to go in and buy their product. If people don't do that, then the commercial was not successful." If you are truly offended, stop eating at Burger King and tell your friends why. Burger King is trying to be hip and clever, and all they are doing is coming off creepy and psychotic. Some ad agency has convinced their marketing director that this will "be huge", but the only way to make it a "huge disaster" is if people stop eating in their restaurants. Be sure to tell then too:

Burger King Corporation
5505 Blue Lagoon Drive
Miami, Florida 33126

Corporate Headquarters - 305-378-3000
Marketing/Advertising Information Requests - 305-378-7200
Consumer Relations - 305-378-3535

E-mail communication is not accepted.

This is why I TIVO the races :) No use watching that crud!

Anonymous said...

Whatever happened to "hold the pickle, hold the lettuce, special orders don't upset us, all we ask is that you let us serve it your way....".

I agree with red. It's actually a very confusing commercial with too much happening. The whole Sir Mix Alot tie in would totally be lost on kids so it's really not clear what they're trying to do. A simple catchy jingle is what works.

But am I offended and not going to eat at BK? Nope, I'll still stop in for a Whopper now and then.

Speaking of sponges, did Bubba the Love Sponge change NASCAR TV as we know it? I believe JD made a comment like that prior to Dega. Perhaps a little heavy on the hyperbole?

GinaV24 said...

Must be the same person who was in charge of the "new" Wendy's ads from a year or so ago! About the same mentality. I couldn't figure out why the guys in the commercials were wearing Raggedy Ann braids -- see how I think. The BK king commercials have always creeped me out and this one just leaves me saying -- what were they thinking? It sure doesn't make me think yeah, I need a BK today. Nope, it goes into the avoid this company at all costs for me -- Booty is booty, indeed! But we all know that sex sells -- look at Danica's ads and heck, Kasey Kahne's Allstate ads were creepy too -- stalkers!

50 yr. fan said...

I think Burger King spelled it out
when they said rap has become an
regular part of everyone's life.
They obviously don't know anything
about Nascar fans. I agree on
the comments on the king's image.
He is slimey.

living the dream... said...

i am 37 years old. i was a teen when this song came out. this commercial is aimed at gen x who now have their own children. if you are offended by this commercial, you take yourself way too seriously.

Tracy said...

"Perhaps, dancing women in spandex with phonebooks in their shorts are not exactly the way to motivate adult female NASCAR fans to go to Burger King. "

Right spot on and well said. I will NEVER buy a BK again. NEVER NEVER NEVER. I love to laugh, but this ad is so offensive, it's not even in the ridiculous catagory.

midasmicah said...

It isn't just the latest BK commercial that's pretty much turned me of regarding what the ad people come up with to sell a product. They must be aiming at fifteen year old boys or children. The BK commercials with the king are just creepy(partitularly the one with the king in bed with a man). Most ads today range from annoying to simply disgusting. And don't call me a prude because I feel this way. All these ads do is NOT make me want to go to their businesses. Someone earlier said if I don't like the commercials don't watch. Believe me I don't. I change the channel.

Nan S said...

Yet another reason to record the race and fast forward through the commercials.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 8:25AM,

Please feel free to go back and view that column by using the google seach under blogs.

No one even intimated that something would happen, merely that having a radio personality who operates a pornographic website and regularly engages in sexually explicit content is certainly a new wrinkle in the NASCAR Grand Marshal line-up.

JD

Anonymous said...

Lets get real...are we really supposed to "get this ad"? It is made for 16-18 males who choose between BK, Mc and Taco Bell. Believe it or not but there are 16-18 year olds who watch NASCAR! I'm sure BK bought a block of adv for Nascar, MLB and Sunday night prime time from FOX to reach the 16-18 male. Not everything needs to cater to 40-70 year olds, who remember the "good Ole Days"

Tracy said...

Anon, the 16-18 yo males don't have the spending power of those of us who have worked for a while. Somehow, I don't think BK can survive on that 16-18 yo demographic.

To the poster who provided BK's addy and phone number, thank you. I'll use both.

On another advertising note, because of Jeff G's "throwback" Pepsi car, I found some of the stuff. It's wonderful!! I called Pepsi and told them so. That's how powerful advertising can be in the Nascar community. And I discovered a drink I love.

Anonymous said...

First off I will say that I find the BK King creepy and a terrible advertising campaign. However, the fact that we are talking about it and it is getting mainstream attention (even negative) will probably result in the campaign being labeled a success.

Maybe they should employ the Geikco agency next time, a burger with eyes might get the same result.

John Lee, Hollywood winner said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Burger King sponsors Tony Stewart, one of the most popular drivers in NASCAR. Why don't they make and air a commercial with Tony instead? He was a good pitchman for Home Depot, Armorall, etc. I'd much rather see Tony than the uber-creepy King.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 11:23AM,

You sincerely think that this commercial targets 16-18 year-old males?

This is a SpongeBob toy giveaway for little kids and their parents, or at least that was my impression.

Makes you wonder who they are really targeting.

JD

Anonymous said...

Tracy said...
Anon, the 16-18 yo males don't have the spending power of those of us who have worked for a while.

Check out the fast food joints on Fri-Sat after 8pm and see how many HS kids use these as a place to meet and eat

Anonymous said...

Daly Planet Editor said...
Anon 11:23AM,

You sincerely think that this commercial targets 16-18 year-old males?

This is a SpongeBob toy giveaway for little kids and their parents, or at least that was my impression.

Makes you wonder who they are really targeting.

JD

April 30, 2009 12:39 PM


Check out Spongebob vids on You Tube...most of them are parodies of the cartoon made by and for the late teen age group.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Check out the fast food joints on Fri-Sat after 8pm and see how many HS kids use these as a place to meet and eat

April 30, 2009 12:48 PM

In my area the cars and money in their pockects might really surprise you....nice cars and plenty of spending money!!

Las Vegas Greg said...

I saw the commercials and they were absolutely terrible. I am 50 years old and I had no clue about the tie-in with a rapper. If I knew that, I'd be even moe frustrated with that ad concept. I guess - I am now. Fact is, as much as I do not like Burger King's advertising campaign, their double Whopper with Cheese is one hell of a sandwich and I wish that I had one now. Their french fries have always been terrible.

Anonymous said...

West Coast Diane said:

First, Bill O'Reilly did this commercial and the one they pulled that offended Mexico in his "culture" segment.

This is an example of why I DVR everything and use the FF button. The other of course are the ED commercials Go Daddy, etc. I have written to networks (and radio stations, ED ads are even worse than TV) telling them that I FF or change stations which means along with the offensive (to me) ads I am not listening to other sponsors commercials. So, they may be losing my business.

A side note...there are still ED ads on the radio, but I have noticed recently they are not as suggestive or detailed as previously. Listening to feedback, or just a lull before they rerun them??? Hope it's the former.

Gary said...

Speaking of commercials, somebody needs to coach Steve/Rusty about the car warranty company he does commercials for and gets sponsor money from:

http://consumerist.com/5234396/car-warranty-racket-exposed-on-today-show

The Today show goes on to point out that the company has 1100 complaints with the St. Louis Better Business Bureau.

Yeah, I know it's a NASCAR sponsor.

bevo said...

The King character is just plain creepy on his own. Don't think though that the campaign is just aimed at kids and their parents. SpongeBob is big with the teen and college crowd who indulge in that "non-Winston" product, if you will. Also SpongeBob has a large gay following. The ads are all over the place, not just NASCAR races.

glenc1 said...

just gotta thank Tony for that story of the King mask...that would be a creepy sight!

You know, the King itself--at first I found him creepy but in a sort of funny way at times. At some point they had an ad where--I forget the details but a kid kicks the King, and that was too much. Not offensive, just stupid and too creepy. And while I don't blame them for going a little edgy (even McDonald's has used rapping), they seem to forget that *parents* are the ones they should be aiming at (once again, it's not just the toy--it's to buy an *adult* meal and get the kids meal with the toy free.) Who wants an extra kids meal except a parent? Not too many 16 year old boys are buying for their siblings.

As for the generational thing--yes, I suppose this might be the Sir Mix a lot generation grown up. But that's the problem--they presumably *have* grown up and might not want their kids making that connection. Frankly--I don't remember the song and know "Sir Mix' only by name. I just never was in to that kind of music, if you want to call it that.

I don't think older people expect all ads to be geared to their age level (and let's remember, the ED ads *are* aimed at the older generation). But when it concerns children, who already have a lot of bad advertising aimed at them, that's what people object to. I don't even have kids, but I get that.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Daly Planet Editor said...

Please do not continue to take the time to leave comments telling others to just "get over it."

We are interested in your opinions about this commercial. We are interested in whether or not you have to mute the sound on the TV during these commercials.

Others have told me in email that they now record races for family viewing rather than watch them live due to the content of the commercials.

This is one of the reasons we created this post and asked for your opinion.

Thanks again for the comments.

JD

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

However, the fact that we are talking about it and it is getting mainstream attention (even negative) will probably result in the campaign being labeled a success.

Again, no.

The objective of buying advertising is to get consumers to purchase a product or service.

If all BK gets out of the millions they spent on this campaign is "publicity," but no more people buying burgers, then they wasted their money.

Tracy said...

Sat. night at the BK for teenagers in their cars paid for by their parents is not what I consider to be a steady market. It's the moms who use the drive-thru on the way home from school with a van load of elementary-aged kids who are starving who should be their market. Been there, done that.

That said, I asked my 23 yo daughter about the ads, and after much sighing, she explained Sponge Bob's non-child friendly persona, one that's definitely sexual and creepy and very hip in her age bracket and younger. (I can't and won't go into details, but YUCK.) It seems as if BK is trying to cover too many age demographics with one ad, and all they got was a crowd of irate parents and women who think it's insulting. Mind you, women who buy kids meals for their hatchlings...

Anonymous said...

First of all, I found the commercial to be hilarious.

Second of all, unless they are going to ban Budweiser, there is no "must-be-kid-friendly" rule in place during NASCAR. I don't see you raising any concern about kids watching commercials with funny talking horses that promote drinking beer.

This is a family sport, but it isn't a Rated-G sport, and there is a big, big difference.

Anonymous said...

PS, I'm 40 and found it hilarious, not 15. And I didn't find it funny because I am Beavis and Butthead stupid looking at the screen going "Ha-huh-ha, butts!"

I found it hilarious because it is just so absurd - the Burker King in a Sir Mix a Lot parody? Sorry, but that to me is funny. And the phone book inserts are hilarious. The commercial also nailed a few details from the original video that show the mark of an accurate parody.

Okay, so it's not your sense of humor. That's fine. I'm sure that the people who laugh at Sex and the City don't think Larry the Cable Guy is funny, and I am sure it is vice-versa.... but the insinuation seems to be that unless you are a little kid you wouldn't think this is funny is just off.

I'm 40, white collar, a NASCAR fan, and I loved the commercial.

Next thing you know you will complain that Mike Joy said during Talladega (and he did) "Those guys were banging the ccccrrrrap out of each other!" because a 6 year old shouldn't hear it.

Anonymous said...

I'm 40, white collar, a NASCAR fan, and I loved the commercial.
,br>
..and a male, without kids, I'd bet.
Which makes a difference.

Terry said...

I think the commercial is totally tasteless just like the rest of the ads featuring that creepy king. I haven't gone to BK in ages, and won't now either. I always mute the commercials and always have. This is just another reason.

Phil said...

If you see nothing wrong with this commercial, there is little or no hope for you.
Just keep doin' what you're doin.

Anonymous said...

I used to let my kids decide between BK & Mickey D's. I didn't HAVE to stop going to BK. The kids refused.From the very first ad, that "King" scared the crap out of them!
So, problem solved. The food is junk anyway.

Anonymous said...

To the person who suspected that I don't have kids - I do. I have a six-year-old boy. He loves Digger (god help him) and when a commercial like that comes on I do a little thing many people seem to have never heard of: PARENTING!

I don't let the boy watch it. I either scan through the commercial and in some cases I've actually been known to - gasp - reach over and physically cover his eyes! It's called being a responsible parent and watching tv WITH your kids, not just having the TV on while you are both in the room.

And if I mess up and the boy sees the commercial. First, I doubt he'll be any more harmed by this than I was by watching HR Puff-N-Stuff, but if I mess up and he sees it - I blame my parenting skills, I do not blame NASCAR and I do not suggest that the commercial should not be on TV during NASCAR.

Take some responsibility. If you are going to let your kid watch a sport where men constantly flip the F-finger out the window, talk about how they drink Bud and Miller Lite, and even occasionally settle their differences by fighting - then you'd better be prepared for a JOKE commerical in which a girl has a phone book in her pants. I mean, really.

Anonymous said...

So much over cartoons..Digger and now BK King...I guess "Get off my Lawn" is shouted by many on here.

And also where do you all get your TVs with no on/off switch or remote?

Anonymous said...

So much over cartoons..Digger and now BK King...I guess "Get off my Lawn" is shouted by many on here.

And also where do you all get your TVs with no on/off switch or remote?


This cliche only works for offensive TV shows, not for offensive commercials.

What do you propose, we turn off the TV at the start of the offending commercial and then turn it back on 30 seconds later?

Anonymous said...

men constantly flip the F-finger out the window,

I think you need to look up the definition of the world "constantly."
When was the last time we saw this on TV? And before that?

Certainly not "constantly" by any stretch.

Sophia said...

Adults watch nascar and drink beer.

Gotta be old enough but aside from overtly suggestive commercials are ok.

These ED and "male enhancement" adds which are getting WORSE on talk radio here, the Zencor? add. Yikes!

There is a HUGE difference between a salacious commercial ambushed on kids and having the freedom to not have the remote taped to your side while in the kitchen getting your kids a snack if they watch the race with you.

Don't have kids but i would be one JD is hearing from that tape or DVR the races before letting a child of mine see this rubbish.

cvt said...

This commercial just makes me appreciate the Aflac spots all the more.

Gymmie said...

@sophia--I don't know if there's been uproar around the country, but one of the folks who streams out of NY, I think it was after Idol the news tease was about "parents being outraged of the BK ad" that was a week or so ago. He shut the stream down so I don't know how the story went. I haven't been able to see anything here locally so I don't know how that play is going here.

Anonymous said...

When a commercial offends me, I promptly do two things:

1. Email the offender, stating precisely what part of the commercial is offensive, and that I will be supporting their competitor now.

2. Head for their competitor and buy, buy, buy...

The offenders understand a drop in profits!

Anonymous said...

>>men constantly flip the F-finger
>>out the window
>
>I think you need to look up the
>definition of the world "constantly."
>When was the last time we saw this
>on TV? And before that?
>
>Certainly not "constantly" by any
>stretch.

Did you watch Bristol? I should have kept a notepad, but I saw at least 50 birds flying during that race. For a long time, I didn't notice any of the out-the-window hand signals the drivers made (good and bad), but once someone points it out to you, you won't believe how much you see it.

My point is that this isn't the Harlem Globetrotters - this is a family sport, but not a kids sport.

Kevin in SoCal said...

What a bunch of prudes. The people on this board dont like anything that's fun or silly. I'm a male, 34 years old (still in that prime demographic for another year) and I dont think the commercial is offensive. Its a little strange, and unusual for Burger King, yes. I would have expected Carl's Jr (or Hardee's for you easterners) to make a commerial like this. I say to them keep it up. The more off-the-wall and silly the commercials there are, the better. I dont want to see bland commercials.

Anonymous said...

I actually started shaking my rump when I saw this. Not so much from the ad but the music brings back fond memories. Kids are not equating a measuring stick on a square bottom to anything. Kids say booty all the time or at least until they start swearing. Can anyone say hypersensitivity? Get over it.

KoHoSo said...

43, white, "classic rock" and "classic country," "rap and disco suck" male here formerly in the radio business, now old enough to pretty much hate all commercials...

The ad in question is not really aimed at children. It is aimed at the fathers who came from the generation that might have listened to that song in the hope it will make them take their kids to Burger King.

While reading all of the comments here I am wondering to myself...is it more detrimental for a child to see a bunch of women bouncing around with square buttocks or to see one car slam into another car's front windshield and then fly into the catch fence where debris flies off into the stands? I have always had a problem with NASCAR being equated with "family friendly" when serious injury and even death have for so long been a part of the sport. Of course, that has always been an oddity in US society where the majority of people don't have a problem with TV showing death (the thing that ends life) but get squeamish in sexual matters (the thing that starts life). Paraphrasing the old George Carlin routine on that subject, "I'm gonna kill you now, sheriff" is OK, but "I'm gonna [have sex with] you now, sheriff" is not.

Folks, this has been going on since the days when some races were on FX. Remember the Son of the Beach promos? Some of those went as far as to refer to a certain Japanese practice that I won't even try to further describe here. Advertisers do not care. NASCAR does not care. NewsCorp (the parent company of Fox and FX), Disney/ABC/ESPN, and Time-Warner/TNT do not care. Going all the way back to the seventh comment left on this article (Anonymous Apr 29 7:33 PM)...it is up to all who are parents to take action in their own homes. Personally, if I had kids in the prime SpongeBob viewing age these days, I wouldn't let them watch any commercials...not so much for the sex, but because of a more specifically given Commandment...

Thou shalt not bear false witness.I hope all of that is OK with you, Mr. Daly. Feel free to remove this if I went to far off for your tastes.

Bobby said...

This commercial is downright insulting and is a 180 from the kid-friendly Spongebob movie promotion at LMS when the movie sponsored the October 2004 Nationwide race there; a trackside kid-friendly radio broadcast was conducted with Mike Joy, Stephanie Durner, Chrissy Wallace (Mike's daughter), and Jessie Johnson (Jimmie's brother).

Spongebob is an MTV product, and they have gone over the edge, and some of their offerings have clearly been anti-family. I put a block on anything from MTV Networks to protest how they caused the demise of the "old" ASA, and hurt the WoO and NHRA. (Remember MTV Networks created Spike by killing TNN, and TNN had live NHRA, ASA, and WoO races; the ASA and WoO sued MTV.)

MTV is clearly pushing adult advertising in this instance, and for someone who did not care for "Sir Mix-a-Lot" then, or now, and has seen 4 Him, Point of Grace, and Kathy Troccoli his fair share of times, and is more likely to be at the symphony than at at a rapper's show, it's clear where this ad was targeted. Sadly, as we learned this past election cycle, MTV has passed Fox on the political clout meter.

This commercial has to go, and I would request MTV and Sir Mix-a-Lot be sent to the Oval Office for consultation. This ad is not just Fox -- we'll see it on TNT and ESPN too if this campaign continues.

Makes me appreciate Aflac, Lowe's, and other great sponsors' commercials better.

Daly Planet Editor said...

KoHoSo,

It's not a problem with me. The issue is whether or not you can understand that those with the complete opposite view feel as strongly as you do.

The emails I got were not from freaks or religous zealots. They were just from concerned moms who did not understand why their young NASCAR fans who like SpongeBob and watch racing on TV are being exposed to commercial content like this.

One of the earliest TDP columns talked about the "Son of the Beach" promos and the issues with ED ads and the like.

I appreciate all the strong comments from male TDP readers of all types, but hope you can open your mind to the fact that other views exist as well.

JD

Michael Baker said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Daly Planet Editor wrote:
>The emails I got were not from
>freaks or religous zealots. They
>were just from concerned moms who
>did not understand why their young
>NASCAR fans who like SpongeBob and
>watch racing on TV are being exposed
>to commercial content like this.

You will have to pardon me while I call "hypocrisy" on the moms who wrote you. I wonder if any of them have ever taken the time to watch SpongeBob? That show routinely uses the phrases that I would be HORRIFIED if my child heard. That show is NOT appropriate for small children, and I think too many parents don't take the time to even know what their kids are watching.

I am sorry - but if your kid watches SpongeBob with any frequency they have been exposed to WORSE than the BK commercial. I challenge anyone on this forum who doesn't believe me to tape an episode of SpongeBob (it's on about 12 times a day so it shouldn't be too hard) - then sit through an entire episode and ask yourself if you think it is appropriate for kids. I'm sorry, but these women writing you are ignorant. SpongeBob is worse than that commercial.

Anonymous said...

KoSoHo...slightly off topic, but your comment reminds me of a complaint I heard years ago on a local TV public affairs show. A viewer complained about them showing frontal nudity (it was an independent UHF station) when his 11 and 13 year old kids were watching. The movie (which had a disclaimer at the beginning) was 'Walking Tall Pt 2'. So this dad got upset at frontal nudity, but he thought it was okay for his kids to watch guys beating each other senseless with baseball bats. Amazing.

The experts have long held that violence is worse for kids than things with sexual innuendos (I don't think either is great, espcially when it's exploitive.) But when advertisers sell with sex, which they've been doing since advertising was invented, they just shouldn't combine it with kids' stuff, no matter who it's aimed at. I can't comment on Sponge Bob itself because I don't have kids & have never seen it.

KoHoSo said...

Mr. Daly,

I fully understand your comment and realize what seemed to be going on with what was being said here before I was able to get to this entry to read up on everything and then add my own thoughts. I certainly do understand that people hold different views and beliefs. I respect those differences and hope that nothing I write here at any time is ever taken as a direct insult toward another person who has left a comment. That is why I presented my own views and tried extra hard not to write anything that another of your fine readers would find directly insulting (especially since this particular subject had already turned into a fairly hot discussion). Mostly, what I was trying to do was add some food for thought on the, shall we say, "inconsistencies" on these subjects as I see them. I was just concerned that my comments might have gone too far off topic for your tastes and wanted you to know that I would have been cool with you removing them, so that is why I said what I did at the end. I think I can speak for 99% of us who orbit your virtual planet...giving us the space for these comments and your taking the time to moderate out the trolls, hatred, and various other things even the well-meaning people write that they really shouldn't have while still allowing for good, hard discussion and opposing views is highly appreciated.

glenc1 said...

well said, KoHoSo...

Kevin in SoCal said:
"The people on this board dont like anything that's fun or silly."

Don't you think you're casting a pretty wide net there? There are lots of fun or silly things people here (and aren't you one of them?) have said they enjoyed. Some of them perhaps even a bit risque--there are always going to be people who are more or less sensitive than others. It's a rather unfair generalization when it's a matter of what each person might find silly.

RvNGrammy said...

Tasteless, just like their food. Won't get me to go in and try it again.