Remember that controversial Volkswagen ad that drew media headlines earlier this week? As it turns out, there was another one for the big game on Sunday night that followed a similar theme of associating the popular car manufacturing with peace, love … and Rastafarian culture minus some of the spiritual elements? That’s right, and there was also a little bit of Jimmy Cliff in there to boot.
The ad – Volkswage
The premise – It is pretty similar to the controversial ad in that being around this new Volkswagen car has a tendency to make everyone want to have a smile on their face. The only difference is that rather than having non-Jamaican people suddenly start busting out an island accent, you have Cliff bringing people from all walks of life in order to celebrate everything that is good in the world.
What works – For one, having a Kristen Bell-like woman freaking out over cats was a pretty fun way to kick off the ad, and we can continue that by talking about some of the other great images that were shown off in this commercial. They really crammed in a number of fun characters, and the music is of course catchy.
What doesn’t – We were not as upset about the previous ad as some other people were, but there could have been another way for Volkswagen to represent happiness that did not offend anyone. If you have a brand that is so synonymous with iconic commercials that are fun for everyone, why roll the dice now?
Verdict – Is this ad racist? We don’t think the controversy is anywhere near as bad here as with the other Volkswagen ad for this year. This is more just a cheery commercial, but you still cannot deny that the specter looms large from some of the headlines.
Want to see some more Super Bowl commercials for this year? Be sure to check out the story over at the link here.
Photo: CBS / NFL