I’ve held back from commenting on the SuperBowl Jeep ad for a bit, because I wanted to see if others felt about it the way I do.
Weirdly, both Leftists and Conservatives seem to feel the same way. They hate it. But for different reasons.
If you haven’t seen it, it features Bruce Springsteen as his trademarked character, the Working Man™, riding around Kansas, in a Jeep that’s gotta predate the Vietnam War. He’s drinking a cuppa Joe in a diner, driving the backroads, and (metaphorically) wrapping himself in the American flag, all the while staking a claim for unity in America.Lots to unpack on this one. So let’s get started.
First of all, if you want to unify the country, Jeep, you might want to find someone who’s actually done manual labor (Mike Rowe, maybe?) instead of someone who’s just sung about it. Springsteen is an elitist, Leftist fraud. And he’s not shy about expressing his disdain for the half of the country that voted for Trump, and for Trump himself. Hardly a unifying figure, right?
Next, let’s consider the irony of a foreign-owned company (Jeep), using it’s street cred as a quintessential, American brand, to cram unity down our throats. See, even if you don’t believe the election was rife with fraud, you have to acknowledge that at least half the country backed Trump. And if you look at the Congressional races, the House went for the GOP in a big way. Not exactly a Blue wave of Socialism gripping the country, right?
Then there’s the imagery. I don’t know who directed this particular spot, but it plays like a fever dream of what a Socialist thinks mainstream America looks like. Even worse, the script is all about sneaking in Socialist messages while making you think it’s all about unity. I’ll spare you watching this dreck online, and comment on the pertinent texts here.”Unity belongs to all of us.” (Um…okay.) Or how about this: “The middle has been a hard place to get to recently…between ‘red’ and ‘blue,’ ‘servant’ and ‘citizen.'” (Wha? Red v. Blue I get. But “servant” and “citizen?” Do any of you actually think that politicians and/or bureaucrats are actually public SERVANTS? I know I don’t.
“Between freedom and fear.” (Huh. Didn’t realize they were opposites. But go on.)
“Fear has never been the best of who we are.” Message: (If you’re afraid for our country, you’re not the best of us. Got it.)
“And as for freedom, it’s not the property of just the fortunate few.” (Um…No, Bruce. Freedom is THE founding principle of the United States. You’d know that, if you ever read a Civics textbook.)
“It belongs to us all…whoever you are.” (Um, no, actually. Americans are/were free. That’s why so many people want to immigrate here. Dumbass.)
“We need the ‘middle.’ We just have to remember, the very soil we stand on is common ground.” (Nice allusion. But you’re in the weeds, pal. Maybe lose the metaphors and tell me what you’re after.)
The final image is a map of the lower 48, with a red star in the middle. Then the words “To the ReUnited States of America” appear.
So what are we to take away from this hot mess? The implication that Trump is now gone, so we can all reunite is pretty clear. Not sure what this has to do about selling cars, but there’s a lot of pseudo-spiritual, faux-inspirational crap in ads, nowadays. But what are they telling us? “Come to the light?” “Surrender, Dorothy?” “We won. You lost. Submit or be crushed?” I don’t know. But I know that for the Jeep demographic, this is as big a screwup as Gillette made, when they ran that ad admonishing men to apologize for sexism and “male privilege.”
As a Jeep owner, this makes me sick. And ashamed. I don’t know if this is a product of the ad agency used by Fiat Chrysler before they merged, or if it’s the new bunch. But I’d fire them, faster than you can say “4-wheel drive.” And maybe rethink the whole “as a car company, we need to lecture people on how to live their lives” thing. Jeep – customer talking, here. Just shut the Hell up and go back to building SUVs, okay?
Mike Y says
I’m not quite sure how they could not have known the Red Star symbolism
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_star (top of the page)
“A red star, five-pointed and filled (★), is an important symbol that has often historically been associated with communist ideology, particularly in combination with the hammer and sickle, but is also used as a purely socialist symbol in the 21st century. It has been widely used in flags, state emblems, monuments, ornaments, and logos.”