If there’s something those fat-cat suits at Coca-Cola know how to do, it’s
tug at our heartstrings manipulate us using nostalgia. In the past, there have been a number of coke commercials that straight up brought tears to my twitchy and cynical eyes. I’ve got your number, Coca-Cola and I also know that a frosty bottle of Americana is just as likely to enable me to fall in love as it is to be part of a balanced diet.
A new commercial of theirs (below) shows a number of differences between the lifestyles of a current day man of the new millennium and his grandfather living in an idyllic midcentury by showing a typical day in the life of each man side by side while Tom Jones croons the famous tune ‘It’s Not Unusual’. In the end, aged grandfather and grandson meet in the park and drink cokes together while Coca-Cola reminds everyone to enjoy life. It’s touching, really it is.
Much of the commercial does unfortunately seem to ring true–comparing meal portion sizes (jam on one slice of toast versus jam on two slices of toast and scrabbled eggs) and detachment in favor of glowing screens (breakfast as a family versus breakfast in traffic, dinner as a family versus dinner with a television, lunch on a park bench versus lunch in front of a computer at work); however, it’s disingenuous garbage. Encouraging healthier choices and asking people to rethink 21st century habits is in no way problematic unless the encouraging is being done by people actively pushing an unhealthy product.
Save from the fact that the commercial is selling soda pop as a part of a healthy lifestyle, there is plenty of valuable advice within the ad and it’s pleasant to watch.
Coca-cola company, it’s fine to tell me that your fizzy drink is a delicious part of the history of American capitalism and culture, but don’t tell me that if I eat one less piece of toast in the morning or find a way to magically transport myself back in time, that drinking soda will suddenly be something resembling healthy.
Image is a screen cap from the commercial