"There is difference and there is power. And who holds the power decides the meaning of the difference." --June Jordan

Friday, March 6, 2009

Not Everyone Gets it Wrong

Sometimes, commercials don't suck:

I thought this was a fantastic twist on the dad-playing-catch-with-son scenario we usually see to represent fathers' involvement with their kids. Even though this commercial might otherwise be criticized by showing a girl doing a very stereotypical "girl" activity like cheerleading, I actually prefer it this way over showing the dad and daughter doing something more stereotypically male, because the role reversal of the dad is much more subversive here than if the little girl had been playing, say, basketball with him. It reminds me a little of this headache medicine commercial from the early 90s (can't remember the brand) in which a dad is sitting at a tea party with his daughter, and the narrator explains that he is able to enjoy playing with her now that his headache is gone.

In this commercial, I also like how the person looking out the window to discover them is an older woman who is obviously not the little girl's mother/man's wife. If it had been the mom who discovered them cheering outside, we probably would have seen her expressing either dismay or patronizing approval, both of which would have sent the message that dads and daughters bonding in this way is even more out of the ordinary.

Plus, that little girl is SO cute.


Amber Leab said...

Completely agree. Love this ad!

Anonymous said...

And pretty much every Jell-o commercial with Bill Cosby, right? I seem to remember him always sitting down with some little girl in a fluffy dress.

But maybe that's just a fantasy in my mind, Grandpa Bill feeding me pudding while I wear my princess dress.