Impotence Ads Air Alongside Kids' Shows

Ads for impotence drugs have aired alongside programs targeted towards children, reports the Wall Street Journal.

    “In December alone, an ad for impotence drug Viagra aired at around 9 p.m. during “Prancer,” a G-rated movie about a young girl who nurses one of Santa’s reindeers back to health; another spot for rival medicine Levitra appeared during an afternoon showing of the comedy “Pee-wee’s Big Adventure;” and another for Cialis graced an early-evening presentation of the holiday classic “Miracle on 34th Street.”

Though we love the synergy of an erectile dysfunction ad and “Pee-wee’s Big Adventure,” some groups are left unsatisfied.

The American Academy of Pediatrics has called for the erectile-dysfunction commercials to be restricted to after 10 p.m. so that children wouldn’t view sex as “a recreational sport.”

Though pharmaceutical companies have agreed to restrict suggestive advertising to audiences that are 80% adult, “[they’re] not all sticking to this,” says David Kweskin, senior vice president of TNS, a marketing-research firm. “It’s tough to spend that kind of money without some slippage.”

Have you seen impotence ads alongside children’s programming? Tell us in the comments. — CAREY GREENBERG-BERGER

New Impotence Ads Draw Fire — Just Like Old Ones [WSJ] (Subscription req’d)

(Photo: scottfeldstein)


Edit Your Comment

  1. mattshu says:

    What’s worse to me than the Viagra ads (which are usually vague and somewhat abstract) are the ads for some of the extremely violent movies that air during all hours of the day on nearly all channels. My kids don’t understand what “ED” is but they surely understand stabbings, killings, and screaming.

  2. Rajio says:

    lol @ Pee-wee’s big adventure

  3. faust1200 says:

    I suppose it’s for Dad or Gramps who may be watching Prancer with the kiddies. However, I suppose you would want him in a flaccid condition in this situation. On a serious note, this doesn’t bother me. As the previous poster said these commercials are usually pretty cryptic and to the very young probably seem interchangeable with any insurance, deodorant, or laundry detergent commercial. And if you are old enough to understand then I guess it’s time for the “little talk.”

  4. AcidReign says:

    …..Cartoon Network runs Tunica gambling, Titlemax Loans, and Debt Consolidation stuff all the time in our area.

  5. deltasleep says:

    Far and away the worst offender in this category is Enzyte, the ‘natural male enhancement’ “drug.” During saturday mornings they regularly air ads featuring a smiling man who gets a “big boost in his confidence” when he jumps into the pool, loses his trunks, and everyone stares at him in shock while he grins proudly, pantless.
    Every commercial manages to somehow be so disgusting and offensive that I can’t believe they are still on the air. They DID get in hot water for one in which ‘bob’ is called the “big one” by japanese businessmen.

  6. magic8ball says:

    I’m with mattshu. I watched some college football this year with my son (age 6) and I thought some of the ads for other shows on the network were a little disturbing. There were shots of dead bodies, people bleeding, etc. that I wasn’t expecting to see on ABC in the middle of the afternoon.

  7. reginae says:

    ED ads might make adults uncomfortable when they’re in the room watching TV with their kids, but what SHOULD make them uncomfortable are all the sitcom commercials with nasty bedroom talk. Viagra commercials are, for the most part, innocuous to a child. The sex antics in many television shows aren’t.

  8. Smashville says:

    “…..Cartoon Network runs Tunica gambling, Titlemax Loans, and Debt Consolidation stuff all the time in our area.”

    It’s most likely your cable provider doing that and not Cartoon Network. I don’t believe Titlemax advertises any other way…

  9. eeebee says:

    The worst are those Trojan Man ads on the radio. My kids never paid attention to adults talking about “E.D.” or “having a nice period” but they’d sing right along to “Trojan Man, Trojan Man!”.

  10. ndavies says:

    Are they saying that “Prancer,” “Pee-wee’s Big Adventure,” and “Miracle on 34th Street” appeal primarily to children? I think they’d fall into the iffy territory of appealing to adults while being appropriate for children, which doesn’t mean that the ads shown during them need to be appropriate for kids too.

    That is, if you believe there are things inappropriate for kids that are appropriate to other sizes of humans…

  11. AcidReign says:

    …..Yep, it’s a Charter Cable deal. I love answering the phone when their sales folk call. “You’re with Charter? Oh please, PLEASEEEE! can you get me a picture with no snow? Oh, it’s horrible! I can’t even get Soap Net or Comedy Central at all!”

    …..Keep it up, and they’ll eventually stall out, and not call you back for at least a year. Needless to say, I’m still on analog cable. I’ve never tried their “pipeline.” My next door neighbor has Charter’s 3 mbit service, and it took him 18 hours to upload a 30 meg file to his work server over the internet.

  12. etinterrapax says:

    Ditto to Mattshu. I remember specifically this time last year when Hostel was running promos in a lot of places I wouldn’t expect–or want–to see them, like on HGTV. Violence aside, the last thing any parent needs is for a kid to develop a superfluous sense of dread about someone wearing medical garb. Viagra questions are a lot easier to answer.

  13. Coronagold says:

    What’s even more sickening are those genital herpes ads they run in daytime TV. Basically their selling point is “I use Brand X so my lover is none the wiser.” And I love how all the actors are white preppies. Yeah. No genital herpes problem in the depressed inner city neighborhoods.

  14. Oh, and what an adventure, it was.