While it would be hard to say that this year’s crop of Super Bowl ads ushered in a more diverse or inclusive media landscape, there were some stand-outs in a field of mostly white-guy and stereotype-heavy offerings during America’s most watched show (hard to call it a game really).
Coca-cola has, perhaps, the most talked about commercial of the Super Bowl season. Their entry, titled “It’s Beautiful,” featured people from all walks of life doing different things in the good ‘ol USA, which was apparently confusing to some people who took to twitter bitching about a patriotic-themed commercial filmed in foreign lands. Sigh. It’s a big country with deserts and mountains and oceans and glaciers and snowed-in hamlets — all of those (except desert) are in Alaska alone! But I digress. …
Folks in the ad — which included the first gay couple ever shown in a Super Bowl commercial — sang verses from “America the Beautiful” in different languages. So, naturally since the ad featured a patriotic song, anti-immigration conservatives and racists vented their outrage via social media. You can see examples of that fuckery here and here. (I guess we shouldn’t tell them about how “America the Beautiful” was written by a feminist lesbian.)
Perhaps my favorite part of the vitriolic anti-brown-people reaction is how really, really ignorant some of these racists are about America. You know, the country and culture they claim to be defending?
Here are the Top Five Bigot #Facepalms Regarding the Coca-cola Ad:
- Sing the national anthem right! I agree, renditions of our national anthem should be sung with the appropriate respect. But the national anthem is “The Star-Spangled Banner,” written by Frances Scott Key in 1814. “America the Beautiful” — the song in the soda ad — was written by Katharine Lee Bates in 1893. So …
- #SpeakAmerican: Within no time the hashtag #SpeakAmerican blew up with people decrying the use of multiple languages in the commercial as simply “un-American” because this is America where we speak “American” and “not Mexican or Muslim” (that’s a real quote from a tweet, not me!). … Please tell me more about languages called “American,” “Mexican,” and “Muslim.”
- “American” wordsmiths: Defenders of “American” language (WTF?) are really nailing the “official” language. To wit, this gem from the Coca-cola Facebook page, “that is blasphmey the law says we are aenglish speaking country other countrys do not accomadate america when it comes 2 their country anthems 2 do it here is a shame and all 4 the almighty dollar that is cokes real agenda well now pepsi is number 1 go pepsi gp.”
- I do not think that word means what you think it means: It turns out the United States of America does not have an official language — “American” or English or anything else. So, if by “official” you mean “accepted” and by “American” you mean “English,” then … nope.
- Geography 101: “America” is a continent, not a country. In fact, it’s actually TWO continents — North and South Americas. True story: Canadians, Colombians, Ecuadorians are all Americans!
You can see all of my tweets from the game in a convenient Storify here. Plus, check out this story on the first-ever small-business ad during the Super Bowl, which just happened to be for woman-owned and pro-girl toy company GoldieBlox, which promotes STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) fields.