Friday, February 1, 2013

Dear Tide

Dear Tide,

Here's some of the dialogue from your new commercial:
Woman: It was our first date and he took me to a restaurant and there was this waitress there and I got very jealous because she was pretty so I threw salsa on him.
Here's what we see actually happening onscreen:
Man and woman seated at a restaurant table beside a nondescript wall.  Waitress walks past without acknowledging their presence.  The man watches waitress to the point of turning around in his seat so that he can track her as she continues past them.
"I got very jealous because she was pretty" means that this woman is so insecure that the mere existence of an attractive woman in the vicinity drives her to violence.

"I was pissed off and resentful because he was ogling other women in front of me in ludicrous, obvious, cartoonish fashion" is a little bit different.

You're openly rewriting one scenario (a woman's angry response to a man's wanton rudeness) into another (an irrational, hysterical woman's overreaction to her own insecure impulses, with the man's behavior a complete non-issue) to make the scene more misogynist.

Here's what your commercial says to me: women are so petty and so nasty that the very presence of another woman will throw her into a violent rage.  The man, meanwhile, is completely innocent and has nothing to do with anything.  Sure, maybe he took a little look, but what do you expect?  He's gotta keep his options open, am I right?

Do I recommend throwing salsa on people?  No.

Do I recommend using Tide Stain Savers?  No, not if they're being marketed like this.

Please reconsider your marketing strategy, and I'll reconsider my laundry needs.

With love,
Frank Lee

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