Tuesday, December 16, 2008
AiAA: That NFLshop.com Spot
Chances are you've seen the commercial for NFLshop.com that features an African-American husband and wife exchanging Christmas gifts. The wife receives a toaster from her husband, while the husband "gives his blood" in exchange for a Green Bay Packers jersey.
I should note that I couldn't find the actual commercial anywhere on the interwebs, but you should instantly recognize it from the screen grab in this link. If the goal of the spot was to drive traffic to the NFL's official online retailer, it worked. On the day the commercial debuted, NFLshop.com reported a 260% increase in sales. Still, this particular ad offers up a lot of awful…and that's what I'm here for.
1.) After the husband rattles off some of the features of the $10 toaster ("…it's got a knob for 'light' and 'dark'…") the wife replies with a terse "MmmHmm". It's one of those tired jive-time soundbites that's long been associated with Black women dating back to its '70s & '80s sitcom "sassy Black neighbor" origins. Racist? Absolutely not. But, not every African-American woman is Wilona Woods or Sandra Clark.
2.) As the husband opens his gift, he cuts his finger then proceeds to bleed – in the green and yellow colors of the Green Bay Packers. This is actually a clever little piece of hyperbole, save for one thing: there aren't any Black fans of the Green Bay Packers. There just aren't. Just like there aren't any Black Boston Red Sox fans (we've never forgotten that the BoSox were the last Major League team to integrate – 12 years after Jackie Robinson) or Black Utah Jazz fans (my wife and her family is from Utah and, as a result, I know every African-American in the state…none of them like the Jazz).
3.) If the wife in this ad really loved her husband, she would've NEVER gotten him a personalized jersey with anything but a real player's name on the back. "Pack Daddy #1"?! Really?! There have been a zillion cookie-cutter pieces written on the "rules" for wearing your favorite jersey and all of them include a personalization provision allowing for no leeway here. I'm proud to say Mrs. Bootleg would know better.