Weight Watchers Crosses A Line In Tasteless New Charles Barkley Ad

Charles Barkley I am not a role model Nike ad 1993Charles Barkley

Weight Watchers specialises in marketing to women, but its new ad looks like it’s going for the 13-year-old boy demographic.The spot, created by McCann, stars Charles Barkley teaching a lesson in euphemisms for “penis.”  The basketball legend lists 16 different ways to name the male anatomy, starting with the easy stuff (Peter, Richard, Johnson, etc.).

Why? Because according to the ad with every 35 pounds a man loses, he might gain a visible inch on his “Colonel Poker.” (There is no claim in the ad that this is supported by any medical evidence.)

The problem with the ad is that it’s simply kinda gross. One of the golden rules about making viral video is that users must be able to share it with family and friends. Sharing this video, however, will only make the sharer look like a sophomore with no taste.

Even assuming the ad’s “inch” claim is true, there’s precedent for how this can be handled successfully. In the mid-2000s, Philips launched a “Bodygroom” electric shaver that promised an “extra optical inch” for men who keep things trim down there. Although the ad was relatively explicit about its subject, it never actually mentioned any words that can’t be used at the dinner table.

In other words, it was risque and clever at the same time.

Weight Watchers’ version is neither, unfortunately.

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