with Avi Spivack
Hi, I'm Avi, and I try to put the work and the dad together, with mild success. This is all about trying to give you a view from what it looks like on the dad-man's side of the world, and I hope you find my ruminations humorous because I try not to take myself too seriously.
Raise your hand if you watched the Super Bowl?
Didn’t think so.
Now raise your hand if you watched the Super Bowl commercials on the web on the day after the Super Bowl.
Maybe a few more?
Well, I watched the Super Bowl (the football game) AND all of the commercials, and there were a few that surprised me, intrigued me, made me smile, and made me think (not all of them made me do all of those things, only some). My next three posts will dissect three of those commercials, all of which center on manhood, and the brand’s desire to strike a nerve with the men watching the game and attract them to the brand’s product.
The first one is the Dodge Charger (a car). The ad is titled “Man’s Last Stand.”
Before I give you the link to go and watch the ad itself, I would like to comment on the title - what does it mean? The implication is that “man” (all men?) have been emasculated (yes, I love to use that word, it has such a nice ring to it) by the females of the world. We have played the “female rules,” and because we do, we will - like General Custer - have one last stand (I bet you can guess what it is - The Dodge Charger!!!).
Okay, go watch it and then come back: click here for Man’s Last Stand
So here’s how a man watched it:
Many of the “rules” that the men state are ones that I follow:
I eat fruit as part of my breakfast.
I shave (everyday).
I put the seat down.
I listen to my wife’s opinion of my friends.
(But I am not very quiet…)
I go to work. I sit through meetings.
I put my underwear in the basket.
What strikes me (and frankly, kinda worries me) is the TONE of the commercial - it is one of disdain, of bubbling rage, that all of us men are raging animals that need to drive a big, loud, fast car in order to express our masculinity…and for us some of that might be true, but this comes very close to crossing a line - and that might be the point, to be memorable, but is it offensive?
I won’t deny that we do need to have testosterone-filled outlets: going to a basketball game and yelling loudly (great scene in my favorite guy movie, “I Love You, Man” where they go under the Santa Monica pier and just yell), beers with the guys, or listening to grunge rock - whatever floats your boat - but does it mean that we feel like caged, domesticated animals, forced to live in a female-constructed universe where our car is the only thing we can truly own? And if so, did Dodge connect to the Super Bowl viewers?
What do you think - should I go and buy a Charger?
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