Agencies say no chimps or dogs harmed in making these ads
A bunch of Super Bowl ads with nary a whiff of controversy? Yawn! If there is any hubbub this year, it’s centered on the return of the CareerBuilder chimpanzees and the dog racing at the heart of the Skechers ad.
Animal rights activists have said that real chimps shouldn’t be used in ads at all because they’re routinely mistreated, even with today’s safeguards in place. And at least one group has complained about the Skechers premise because it depicts racing greyhounds. That industry has had a history of abuse complaints.
Yet CareerBuilder and Skechers soldier on with their furry mascots, saying the animals were treated well and the Humane Society monitored the ad shoots.
CareerBuilder returns to well-trod but still comic ground with its prank-pulling chimps. They’re meant to be simian stand-ins for every boorish co-worker you’ve ever had, and they still pull it off, this time sabotaging a long-suffering human employee’s business trip.
Skechers, which last year used reality maven and media magnet Kim Kardashian, puts itty bitty versions of its GOrun shoes on a pudgy French bulldog named Mr. Quiggly. In the 15-second teaser, viewers find out that Quiggly is prepped to challenge a whole pack of long-legged greyhounds at a dog track. Execs at the company have said the ad represents the underdog in all of us. He already has his own Facebook page -- can a line of Quiggly licensed swag be far behind?
- T. L. Stanley