Advertising watchdog bans unorthodox ice cream ad


Advertising can be a complicated business.

Gone are the days when you could think about selling potatoes by showing a picture of one, and then explaining what it is and what you do with it.

No, your modern ‘Ad Man’ would laugh contemptuously at such a ridiculous idea.

These days, in order to sell a potato, you’d need to show a Milan street-scene accompanied by some searing orchestral music. Into which would run an assiduously-oiled model in a pair of 50’s swimming trunks, heading towards the camera in slow-motion – a potato clutched lovingly to his chest. Finally, after battling adversity and fatigue, the elated model would then pound up some steps and set light to the potato in the Olympic cauldron. In front of a roaring crowd. In the rain.  

That’s how you do that. Do you see now?

Well, of course, no – that’s nonsense.  But, sadly, it’s not wildly off the mark either.  

Last week, a new ad for Antonio Federici ice cream was banned by the Advertising Standards Authority for its offensiveness to Catholics

Some sort of terrible oversight? No. This was the third time in two years the ice cream maker has been censured by the advertising watchdog.

Its current campaign shows two Catholic priests about to passionately kiss each other beneath the tagline:  ‘We Believe in Salivation’.  (Surely that crap pun is the more offensive thing?)

Defending themselves, a spokesperson at Antonio Federici explained that they were actually a Catholic company and that the campaign did not set out to ‘mock’ Catholicism but reflect the ‘grave troubles’ currently affecting the church.  

Accordingly, Antonio Federici’s new campaign had set its sights on raising the issue of “gay and lesbian priests and bishops – something that had bitterly divided the Church of England over recent years and was likely to continue to do so.”

Well, that’s as maybe. But, surely, the brief was to sell some ice cream…?


~ by wordwrites on March 30, 2011.

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