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And you thought the Tahoe ad idea was bad ...

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Chevy is back it at with another ridiculous ad strategy. Since their "make your own" Tahoe advert was a flop, Chevy and John "whatever-my-middle-name-is-today" Mellencamp have teamed up to try a new angle--capitalizing on American icons like Rosa Parks and MLK, and tragedies like 9/11 and Katrina, to sell their new Silverados. Seth Stevenson at Slate rolls up the newspaper and slaps Chevy in the nose with his assessment of the ad:

This ad makes me—and, judging by my e-mail, some of you—very angry. It's not OK to use images of Rosa Parks, MLK, the Vietnam War, the Katrina disaster, and 9/11 to sell pickup trucks. It's wrong. These images demand a little reverence and quiet contemplation. They are not meant to be backed with a crappy music track and then mushed together in a glib swirl of emotion tied to a product launch. Please, Chevy, have a modicum of shame next time.

Idolator had this to say in their so aptly titled post, 'John Mellencamp's controversial new song hurts so bad':

The video is creepily exploitative--we're pretty sure that Rosa Parks didn't get on the bus hoping that she'd be posthumously employed to sell pick-up trucks--and the song sounds like every other Mellencamp tune since 1992.

And SoulTek:

...GM is using images of 9/11 - an act largely produced by America's foreign oil dependency - to promote a gas guzzler and the apparent pride of foreign oil dependency.

And Jalopnik, who got their hands on an earlier version of the commercial, informs us that it originally showed a "scene of a mushroom cloud -- what we're assuming was a test of some sort -- then an image of duck n' coverin' kids doing just that under their desks." A nuclear explosion!

**BONUS** a few examples of Chevy's make-your-own Tahoe disaster:

Key Issues: