Today's guest post is by Peppercommer and Kangoo Nation member, Deb Brown.
OK... so I might be in the minority here, but I think the fairly new Snickers commercial for its new Peanut Butter Squared isn’t ha-ha funny nor is it dark humor. It’s just plain dark (and I don’t mean as in chocolate). The commercial debuted in January but I saw it for the first time earlier this week. Somehow I luckily escaped the tasteless spot over the past several months. However, for some reason, the ending was slightly different from the one that ran in January. The commercial I saw omitted the guy at the end (see original commercial below). Maybe the company thought that would soften it a bit. Yeah, right. The commercial shows a focus group of sharks saying how they thought the young man tasted better than the young woman because he had eaten Peanut Butter Squared as opposed to a peanut butter cup (in other words – take that Reese’s... sharks like young adults who eat Snickers PB Squared better).
Now, I happen to have a sense of humor. But, I didn’t find this commercial funny. I actually thought that BBDO, which created the spot, and Mars, the candy company responsible for all things Snickers, crossed the line from humorous to sick and stupid. I think this spot is indicative of television/cable television today. We’re constantly lowering the bar when it comes to reality TV so why should commercials be any different? Since when is the death of young adults even remotely funny? And since when is it ok to use the deaths of young adults to sell candy or for that matter…anything? The commercial is even more morbid when you learn that the month before it launched, a woman was killed by a shark in Egypt. And, just a few days ago, a 6-year-old girl almost lost her leg in a shark attack.
There’s nothing tasteful about this spot. I’m not sure if Mars got itself into a sticky situation with this spot that will negatively impact Snickers’ sales or if the general public will just accept it and buy the candy. I still believe Mars bit off more than it could chew with this spot. But, maybe I’m wrong. Or, maybe we hit such lows with television shows and commercials that nobody even notices anymore.