Pot Noodle’s latest commercial has come under fire from viewers
because of its portrayal of sado-masochism, according to the latest
Independent Television Commission’s TV Advertising Complaints
The HHCL & Partners ad, which attracted complaints from 56 viewers,
shows a male prisoner challenged by a sadistic female warder for
flouting prison rules by eating Pot Noodle.
The prisoner is then seen being punished, doing press-ups naked in the
prison yard while the warder pushes his face into the ground with her
Most of the complaints objected to the implied sado-masochism and the
overt sexual nature of the ad. It was suggested that the spot should
only be shown in the late evening, while a number of viewers felt the
commercial was derogatory to men.
The ITC found that the film had originally been broadcast without a
timing restriction and upheld complaints on the scheduling of the ad
around children’s programming. However, cut-down versions of the film
were allowed without time restrictions and the ITC felt the other
complaints did not justify its removal.
As reported in Campaign (6 March), VNU Business Publications’
ComputerActive magazine fell foul of 243 viewers with its launch ad,
created by the Edge, showing a dog apparently copulating with a man’s
leg. Although the Broadcast Advertising Clearance Centre had restricted
the ad from screening around children’s programming, the ITC felt that a
9pm timing restriction was more appropriate and upheld the complaints on
Ogilvy & Mather was also criticised by the ITC for a Ford Mondeo film
that stated: ’All Mondeos now come with a quick, clear windscreen, CD
player and air conditioning as standard.’ At the bottom were the words:
’Excludes Mondeo Aspen and Verona.’
The ITC ruled that the ad, which had completed its run by the time of
the investigation, must not return.