Worst of Olympic Advertising: the Distressing & the Terrible

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Even though the Olympics bring us some of the most memorable and effective commercials, there are always a few bombs, a few that boggle our minds with their badness.

Count ’em down:

5. Turbo Tax commercial featuring Kristi Yamaguchi. It ranks the least worst of the worst only because of Yamaguchi’s presence and the hilarious face she makes at the end when asked if a hair piece can count as a deduction. Unfortunately the ad does not seem to exist online, which is just stupid as other Turbo Tax commercials are easily found on YouTube. Fail.

4. Dayquil featuring Lindsey Jacobellis and Apolo Ohno. There is just something disturbing about the Dayquil commercials; the Nyquil spots (which follow on the video) are somewhat less distressing and minutely more entertaining, plus the “better tomorrow” line goes over better. Additionally, I take issue with the lack of continuity in the Jacobellis Dayquil spot in which Jacobellis is wearing pajamas that she rips open to reveal a snowboarding jacket with a high collar that logically would have been visible were it beneath the pajamas. I know I am being nit-picky but it has bothered me since the first time I saw the commercial. At least Ohno’s speed skating suit under the pajamas makes more logistic sense, if we are really going for a Superman-like spandex suit reveal situation. Irritatingly, the Jacobellis spot does not appear to be on You Tube– they are really cramping my style for this entry over there. I’m glad that I will no longer be hearing the ‘go get ’em’ music lead-in to these commercials– or the subsequent snotty snoring.

3. Verizon “Sail”– it is just stupid, especially  compared to the quality of offering from Verizon’s arch-enemy AT&T. Plus it trivializes speed skating and simply cannot have that.

2. McDonald’s “Olympic Village,” in which the winter Olympics  appear to be located in a tropical paradise complete with palm trees shading the bobsled team that has stopped by the drive-thru window. This is on top of the ridiculous assertion made that Olympians love to gorge themselves on McNuggets and a special Olympic-edition sweet chili sauce, which for marketing purposes I could forgive– where it not for those palm trees.

1. Omega spots featuring a short track race, an alpine skier and a bobsled whipping down the track. The fifteen second minimalist commercials are just awful, the quality is sorely regrettable and you end up wondering why the elite Omega cannot afford a better ad campaign for their luxury watches. Why?!


And these companies really expected us woo us with these offerings appearing alongside the gems from Visa, P&G, Coco-Cola and the rest from yesterday’s “Favorites” post? Really?



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4 responses to “Worst of Olympic Advertising: the Distressing & the Terrible

  1. Pingback: Advertising for the Olympiad: Favorites « Words to Bumble

  2. Tyler

    I think special note should be made of McDonald’s shameless ad about the young girls’ hockey team that had just been shellacked, but the coach says that tonight they ‘eat like olympians’, at which point the ad cuts from children screaming with delight over their good fortune to them stuffing their smiling faces with Chicken McNuggets.

    As with the above Mickey D’s ad, selling the youth of America on the idea that olympians eat that crap is borderline evil.

    Evil genius, maybe, but still evil.

    • I think I had blocked that one out. Point to Tyler. Another I forgot that was dead awful? That Michael Phelps Subway commercial about swimming through the ground to get the Olympics. Gah!

  3. Pingback: Short Track World Championships: Relays, Super Finals & Social Media Mayhem « Words to Bumble

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