Considering the fact that my husband is a writer and owns an ad agency and as a result I have friends that produce work for a wide range of clients, I don't often criticize or complain about the commercials I see, at least not in public. After all, in this economy anyone who is still employed in the advertising industry is fortunate, even if that means that they have to write spots that aren't creative masterpieces for things like tampons or dog food. Occasionally though, I see a TV spot that is so bad for so many reasons I can't help but talk about it.
Yes, Tyson chicken nuggets. I'm referring to you.
Since Zoe realizes that most commercials (except dad's TV spots, of course) are crap, she keeps the remote handy whenever she is watching TV so that she can either hit the mute button or fast forward through them (if what she's watching is on DVR). Unfortunately, the first time this Tyson spot aired in our house, she wasn't quick enough with the mute.
Just in case it wasn't already difficult enough to get young kids to eat something besides fries, chicken nuggets and cookies, Tyson has decided to run a commercial starring adorable youngsters making faces of disgust and talking about all the foods that they hate. This list includes perfectly edible items like sausage, asparagus, meatloaf, pasta and string beans. One little girl says that "pasghetti" (the one thing that I thought all kids loved), looks like worms.
Since she heard the voices of children instead of my voice, Zoe immediately paid attention. "Hey that girl says meatloaf is gross. And string beans sound gross. What? Spaghetti is made out of worms? Oh look, that boy really likes those chicken nuggets. Those chicken nuggets look good."
While I hate it when people blame TV and other forms of media for brainwashing their kids and turning them into mindless consumers, I get a little pissed off when some chicken company thinks it's funny to make the job of feeding kids harder than it already is. I have no problem telling Zoe "No I am not buying you Moon Sand just because you saw it on TV" or "No I am not buying those cookies just because you saw the elf cartoon on TV" since these are items that I was never planning on purchasing no matter how spectacular they looked in the commercial. I would, however, like her to eat the meatloaf and beans that I sometimes make for dinner without having to hear her say "but the girl on TV said that meatloaf was gross."
I reminded Zoe that she likes meatloaf (covered in ketchup), string beans are the same beans that she's eaten several times and that no, of course spaghetti is not made out of worms. I also told her that this particular commercial and the kids in it are stupid because although that boy was lucky enough to get some green grapes with his chicken nuggets, he never ate them. I also maybe said something like did you know those all natural ingredients used to make Tyson chicken nuggets are actually chicken feet and feathers.
The ironic thing is that Tyson claims that "they can make my job a little easier." I guess they're sort of right, since now when I'm grocery shopping I'll be able to skip going down the aisle with the Tyson chicken nuggets.