Aravosis and HRC Having A Hissy Fit Over Snickers Commercials
The sophisticated message seemed to be that the overreaction of "straight" men to homosexual contact is completely irrational, and, in the case of the proposed threesome, maybe that contact is not entirely shunned.
In typical fashion, however, some loud gays have totally missed the point and are overreacting themselves. John Aravosis at AmericaBlog leads with this headline: "Snickers Superbowl (sic) Web site promotes violence against gays and lesbians. Bears & Colts players react in disgust, on camera, to gays."
HRC's John Solmonese got in on the act Monday afternoon, issuing this statement: "If they have any questions about why the ad isn’t funny, we can help put them in touch with any number of GLBT Americans who have suffered hate crimes.”
Well, I had about 30 "GLBT Americans" at my party, and they enjoyed the ad.
The Snickers Web site features some of the Super Bowl participants reacting to the commercial. Aravosis focuses on the facial reactions of Chicago Bear Muhsin Muhammad and Indianapolis Colt Cato June, who look less-than-comfortable with the kiss. Aravosis seems to be saying that not only are people not allowed to be uncomfortable watching something, but certainly no one can show that discomfort.
In the Web site video, producers of the commercial can be heard telling Bears tight end Desmond Clark that it took 50 takes of the two men kissing for them to get it right.
"I hope they got paid a lot of money," Clark said, assuming that the two men were straight and did not enjoy kissing one another. "I think this is going to be the most shocking commercial for the Super Bowl."
Some of the featured voices, however, are overtly positive about the commercial.
Colts wide receiver Marvin Harrison took the piece well, laughing along with it and saying, "It's definitely a great piece. I don't know who came up with it, but it's definitely a great piece."
Bears quarterback Rex Grossman had praise for the commercial: "It's up there with some of the best I've ever seen, and there's been some great ones. A lot of people that don't like football will watch the Super Bowl for the commercials and the parties. And those types of people are really going to love this commercial."
This ad is not remotely gay-bashing. The point of the reaction of the men was so ridiculous that it made the reaction of straight men to homosexual contact the butt of the joke, not the kiss itself.
Some enjoyed the ad very much. Seth Sutel of the Associated Press gave the commercial his "Best Ad for a Loud Bar" award.
Love it or hate it, Snickers will be getting far more publicity than they could have dreamed of from this ad.
And if I were Mars Inc., which produces Snickers, I wouldn't worry too much about the boycott that Aravosis is threatening: Containing a high fat content and more calories than you could burn running a 5k, Snickers bars don't get eaten by gay men anyway.
Robbie from Malcontent seems to agree.