A reader reports seeing a series of strange Wal-Mart ads that seem to exhibit a subversive, latent, homophobia on the part of the big box retailer.
- “A month or so ago, I happened to see the first in a series of Wal-Mart TV spots knocking boutique-style electronics stores. Featuring a turtleneck-clad schmuck pushing over-priced sets, the man mentions something about a mail in rebate and having to fold it into the shape of a “fruit-bat” to get your cash. I know the exchange was intended to illustrate Wal-Mart’s “no nonsense” low prices. However, the use of “fruit-bat” is not only awkward, but I’m pretty sure is also a derogatory term for a gay male. That said, knowing I have a tendency to read too much into things, I let it go.
Fast-forward to tonight. I’m watching Monday Night Football, and a new ad in the series comes on. This one is set in the same store, with a similar exchange, except this time with an offer of a free gift with a “$50,000 purchase” –a meat smoker.
The fruit-bat thing was weird, but combine that with turtlenecks, a highly stylized environment, and throwing in a friggin meat smoker, I really have a really hard time believing these are all random coincidences.”
Jeez, with all those grade-school innuendos, you would think the copywriters are stealing a page from our playbook!
Can anyone find these commercials?