Day 120: Ad Nauseous – Chips Ahoy

I’ve been out of the ad game for a long time. A part of me feels like I’ve grown more forgiving in my old age. Advertisements just don’t get me as riled up as they used to. I’m not saying that advertisements have improved. On the contrary, they’re as terrible as ever. But they’re not terrible in profound ways that warrants me to waste 500 words of digital breath on it. Also, I see less and less ads on my commute. The ones in the subway stations are rarely changed anymore and the ones on the trains themselves are just kind of…there. As a whole, print advertising has been uninspired for the past few years.

There were a couple of ads that I saw once and was never able to find again. Therefore, it’s been impossible to write about them. One was a PSA to combat racism against Asians. It was a highly stylized portrait of a girl that stated, “I did not make you sick”. At first, it felt totally innocuous. But it wasn’t until I got on the train that I realized a horrible truth. That girl wasn’t wearing a mask. For all I know, she probably did make me sick! I’m all for not demonizing a race for being the cause of Covid. Duh. But I will demonize away for the demographic that flagrantly spreads it because they’re unwilling to wear a mask. I never saw the PSA again, probably because they realized the mistake they made.

The other one was a bus ad for Oatly Oat Milk that bragged, “No cows were harmed in the making of this ad”. And I really beg to differ. The ad could’ve been made from a cows favorite tree. The guy that printed it probably had steak for dinner. In fact, the guy that installed it probably had steak for dinner. People have steak for dinner. It’s delicious. However, I couldn’t get a picture of the ad because it was on the front of a moving bus. I was not willing to risk my life for the sake of the blog. At least not at the moment, I wasn’t.

But there’s a form of advertising that doesn’t sit on a moving object and I can capture at anytime. I don’t know why I didn’t think of it before. Internet ads. Those things suck ass. Especially recently, as companies are becoming aware and proactive towards hip trends. Advertisers have resorted to making memes so that they blend into timelines. You can’t get more “what’s up fellow kids” than that. While some companies do it right and enlist actual memers to do their advertising, others think they’re smart enough to do it themselves. They’re wrong. Case in point: Chips Ahoy.

I’m not even going to mention the creepy facial expressions of the cookie because the more I focus on it, the worse it gets. At its core, the context of the ad is really confusing. Who is Izzy and what is their relationship to the cookie? I’m going to assume that it’s a blind date. Is Izzy even aware that he is about to date a cookie? If not, he is going to be in for a world of surprise. It’s not going to end well. On the other end, if he does know about it, that’s just weird. It’s not going to end well.

Also, why would a cookie be mortified that it wants to be eaten? That’s it’s purpose! That’s like being a toilet that’s afraid of butts. It makes no sense. A sentient cookie should be okay with its purpose and fate. Or else it’s going to have a very traumatic life. It’s going to have to own up to it someday, it’s best to do it as soon as possible.

Another way to analyze this is to look at it literally. Let’s assume that the scenario is at face value. The cookie is going to meet up with Izzy and he makes an autocorrect gaffe. Of course he doesn’t want to eat the cookie, why would you ever think that? Well, that can only mean one thing:

The cookie tastes like crap.

In the end, this ad does a lot of damage to the Chips Ahoy image. It’s now the cookie that you’d like to hang out with but never think about eating. Not only does that discourage you to buy the product, but it also encourages food waste. Go ahead and buy these cookies. But don’t eat them. They have feelings. Just keep them in the back of the cabinet so you can throw them away in 6 months.

Good job, Chips Ahoy. You totally played yourself. Stop making memes.

– TeeCoZee