This set of ads combines two topics of Hit Coffee interest. First, the tendency to make women in commercials outwit the doofus men at every corner. Second, women punishing men (or even moreso, expecting men to punish himself, though I can’t find that one) for oogling women is okay while a man trying to punish a woman is something to be thwarted.

Part one:

Part two:

Category: Theater

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17 Responses to Hit Coffee Weekend: Corona

  1. stone says:

    It’s a beer commercial, Will. Who do you think is the most important target audience to them? I’m thinking men.

    These doofus male characters are always in shows and commercials targeting men. Why is that?

    I think it’s because men don’t want to see female doofuses. Women are supposed to be perfect.

  2. Kirk says:

    I’m fine with Homer Simpson types, but the Corona ads struck something of a sour note with me. I’m not exactly sure why. Maybe it’s because beer is our turf?

  3. stone says:

    Men do tend to like darker beer, I’ve found. The fans of lighter beers, including Mexican, skew more female. So maybe this is one for the ladies.

    Will, it simply can’t be your contention that beer ads are sexist against *men.* Think of all the sexist beer ads there have been over the years … this tiny turnabout is a token gesture.

  4. trumwill says:

    No, no. My contention is that commercials in general in general like to men as doofuses and women as motherly manipulators. Beer commercials used to be one of the big exceptions to the rule, but between Cedric the Entertainer and Corona, even here that’s changing.

    I really don’t think it’s because of a hatred of men on the part of the advertisers. Rather, I attribute it to the fact that men are (for a variety of reasons) less likely to object to being portrayed as the dope and that women (a) hold the purse-strings and (b) like being right… a lot. It also sidesteps a certain awkwardness. Somebody, somewhere would argue if the man sprayed the woman with the lemon it’s a subtextual appeal towards male aggression and a desire to do harm to women.

    I can recognize all of this… but seriously? I’m with Kirk. This type of thing doesn’t ordinarily bother me all that much (except perhaps in the aggregate – I *love* the Cedric ads), but I really find this kinda irritating if I think about it at all.

  5. Peter says:

    My anger at ads like this is tempered by the fact that men are to blame for them. It’s not just that most of the people responsible for creating the ads are likely to be men, but more so the fact that men are willing to laugh at themselves. In contrast, women will not laugh at themselves, at least if there are any men around. Just remember the old joke:

    “How many feminists does it take to change a light bulb?”
    “That’s not funny!”

  6. trumwill says:

    I think it’s better to be able to laugh at oneself than not. It only creates a problem insofar as if Rob and Bob are friends and Rob can laugh at himself and Bob cannot then all of Rob’s and Bob’s jokes are going to be at Rob’s expense.

    I find each of the Corona commercials to be humorous and entertaining as far as commercials go. It’s only when you put them together that it gets agitating.

  7. stone says:

    Peter, I disagree that women wont laugh at themselves. It’s men who don’t think women are funny. We’ve been over this before — doofuses are funny, perfect people are not. So the doofus is the star. The role of the “straight man” usually falls to the female in comedies.

  8. Peter says:

    Peter, I disagree that women wont laugh at themselves.

    Women will laugh at other women, just not in mixed company. As almost every TV commercial and especially sitcom will be viewed by at least some men, women cannot be shown in the doofus role. Violating this rule would prompt a huge outcry.

    One semi-exception is the ad for Chase Sapphire showing a 40ish couple on a ski lift. You’ve probably seen it. The wife doesn’t believe that it’s possible to get a representative on the phone without navigating an endless phone tree, and bets the husband a massage that it’s not possible. She indeed gets a representative and ends up giving hubby a back rub in the ski lodge. It’s only a semi-exception because there is a good-natured bantering tone throughout the commercial, only the couple is shown so the wife isn’t shown up in front of the children (of course this is by necessity true for beer ads too), and there’s an overall aura of upper-middle-class sophistication that somehow makes a bit of teasing more acceptable. Plus, it’s pretty obvious what the couple will be doing after they leave the ski lodge and go back to their room 🙂

  9. Peter says:

    We’ve been over this before — doofuses are funny, perfect people are not. So the doofus is the star. The role of the “straight man” usually falls to the female in comedies.

    Well yes, the doofus man may get more of the attention, but it’s negative, I-am-a-pathetic-loser attention. Obscurity is preferable to that sort of attention.

  10. trumwill says:

    I think it varies from role to role. In some cases, you’d definitely rather play the goofball man-child than the motherly woman. Yeah, it’s negative attention in a sense, but often not of the emasculating, infantilizing, pwned sense of these ads.

    I think in TV shows in particular, Sheila is more right than she’s wrong. There’s a reason that World According to Jim is named after the Belushi and not Thorne-Smith. In commercials? I think by virtue of the fact that they’re disproportionately pitching their product to women, it’s not about the man being funny so much as incompetent.

  11. trumwill says:

    I am still trying to put my finger on why I find this so aggravating when I am not as bothered as some about this dynamic most of the time (I even play to it on this blog). I think it has something to do with the completeness of the dig. Saying that “boys are immature and must be handled” is one thing… but it seems something slightly different when the same campaign also says “Oh, but girls being girls is to be encouraged.”

    I’m sure it ties in a bit towards my previous post about objectification and one of the rationales in particular. Men checking out women are patriarchial and that is not acceptable while women checking out men are striking a blow for womankind. I mean, I really don’t spend a whole lot of time arguing that society is heavily tilted towards women mostly because I don’t believe that’s the case at all. But there are limits.

  12. Peter says:

    One beer commercial that definitely does not infantialize or humiliate men is one for Tecate beer that runs during Friday Night Fights on ESPN2. It shows men working hard during the day and socializing in a bar at night. Everything is fully age-appropriate, the adult men are acting like adult men and not overage adolescents. They’re not being put down by women, in fact there aren’t any women in the commercial.

    The ironic point is that the commercial is entirely in Spanish. Even though Friday Night Fights is in English, it’s safe to assume that a high percentage of the viewers are Spanish-speaking, so running a Spanish ad makes sense. I’m left with the impression that the doofus-male stereotype does not go over equally well in all cultures.

  13. Kirk says:

    Though the Corona ad doesn’t work for me, there are other beer ads that don’t either. I’ve been obsessively watching the TdF for two weeks now, and have probably seen Lance’s “Michelob Ultra” commercial 3,000 times.

    Like the Corona ad, Lance’s ad is filled with young, hip, upwardly-mobile types. (Being 38, Lance is probably ten years older than them all.) Feh. Give me the overweight black guy with the hand truck in the Miller commercials any day.

  14. Kirk says:

    As for the Corona ad, I figure the guy got her back with a “Dutch Oven” later that night. In fact, if Corona made an ad showing that, I’d buy a six-pack of their product.

  15. stone says:

    “Well yes, the doofus man may get more of the attention, but it’s negative, I-am-a-pathetic-loser attention. Obscurity is preferable to that sort of attention. ”

    I thoroughly disagree. “That sort of attention” can and does make performers millions.

  16. trumwill says:

    I think it depends largely on the likeability of the doofus. The likeable Peter Pan that refuses to grow up? Good for a career. The pwned husband who cannot be trusted to get anything right but thank gawd she is there to clean up his mess? Neither good nor bad except insofar as it’s screen-time. The guy from the Corona ads? Nothing. Cedric the Entertainer? Helpful.

  17. Maria says:

    I used to laugh at commercials at this, but now that I realize they are often hurtful to men, I look at them in a different light. They’re sort of the equivalent for men of what “Game-MRA” websites are for women.

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