Jack in the Box: Big Babies

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Admittedly, I’m not in Jack-in-the-Box’s target demographic. I haven’t eaten fast food in years, and frankly? The “Jack” mascot rather freaks me out. He’s edging far too close to clown territory for my peace of mind, thank you very much. If I’m going to eat fast food, I’m not going to be buying it from a clown. (Or a plastic-headed Burger King. Or a little girl with red braids. Oh, dear, my fast food options are few and far between, arent they?)

Now that that teeny bit of SBG’s self psychoanalysis is over, let’s move on to the reason behind this post:

Okay, I know what you’re thinking. What could possibly bother SBG about the above ad? It’s funny! It’s the classic adult-as-child spoof!

I’ll tell you it’s nothing terribly overt. Just notice if you will the adults who deserve snack time are both white, middle-aged men. Notice that a woman is hauling their carcasses around in a giant stroller, so their feet don’t have to touch the ground. Notice that she coddles them and gives her big boys their snacks the instant they demand them, with a smile on her face, and resumes wheeling them around like she’s a glorified pack horse or something.

I find it kind of disturbing, frankly. This is not a pretty picture as far as a woman’s role goes, but it sure isn’t a pretty one regarding men, either.

(To be fair, I do have to give the guy on the left props. He acts like a whiny baby with great skill.)

Comments

  1. gategrrl says

    Oh, how do I hate this commercial. The first time I saw it, it was a “Buh?” moment. Aside from the physical aspects of it-there are very few women capable of pushing two 200+lb men around in a huge stroller like that-but WTF?

    I guess it comes right out and says it all: Men are big babies that need their mommies even when they’re big grown-up business men!

    I’m not quite understanding why there’s this anti-female lashing out with the fast food places. Is it because they know that it’s mostly women who prepare food at home? That men don’t like to make their own? (at least that’s what the stereotype would have you think)

    This commercial is all sorts of wrong.

  2. sbg says

    I guess it comes right out and says it all: Men are big babies that need their mommies even when they’re big grown-up business men!

    That sure seems to be the message here. Yikes.

    I’m not quite understanding why there’s this anti-female lashing out with the fast food places. Is it because they know that it’s mostly women who prepare food at home? That men don’t like to make their own? (at least that’s what the stereotype would have you think)

    There’s a Boar’s Head lunchmeat commercial that mimics a protest rally – it’s filled with women who want to “take back lunch”. Meaning, they want to buy this product so they can make lunches for their husbands and kids rather than having the fast food industry service their families’ food needs. UGH.

    Yeah, I don’t get it. I would guess it’s more likely the advertisers think men are less discriminating when it comes to food, and women aren’t their big-bucks-earning demographic. Maybe? But even that is founded on some sticky assumptions.

  3. says

    I’d been wondering when you’d get around to trashing this one! I wonder if any of the people involved in making it brought up gender at any point or if it wasn’t even discussed.

  4. sbg says

    Yeah, RL got a bit out of control for a while there, but the second I saw this ad I knew I had to say something about it.

    Jack in the Box suffers from what most of the fast food companies suffer from – ad stupidity. The only ones I halfway enjoy are Sonic’s. Seriously, I love the married couple in their ads more than I probably should. The wife cracks me up.

  5. SunlessNick says

    There’s a Boar’s Head lunchmeat commercial that mimics a protest rally – it’s filled with women who want to “take back lunch”.

    There’s a fundamental wrongness with “take back” being co-opted as a sales pitch.

  6. says

    So burger king, jack-in-the-box, mcdonalds and carl’s jr all have deplorably creepy misogynist ads.

    What about wendys? I’m a law student who subsists largely on the dollar menu (well that and bulk rice)….is there no place I can buy uber-cheap pseudo-food products without condoning bizarre stalker behaviors?

  7. sbg says

    Is it just me or is anyone else disturbed by the snacks held like breasts susbtitutes?

    This, and if we’re going to talk symbolism … notice their shape. *cough*

  8. sbg says

    There’s a fundamental wrongness with “take back” being co-opted as a sales pitch.

    Every time I see the ad, I want to hurl things at my TV.

    You know, it’s a wonder I’ve had my television for over ten years, given my temptation to throw things at it. Heh.

  9. sbg says

    What about wendys? I’m a law student who subsists largely on the dollar menu (well that and bulk rice)….is there no place I can buy uber-cheap pseudo-food products without condoning bizarre stalker behaviors?

    Wendy’s has some very weird ads (like this one , but so far I don’t think any of them are filled with this kind of WTFery.

    Oh, wait, there was the Baconator one.

    I don’t think there’s a company in existence that makes 100% spot-on ads all the time. Trufax.

  10. says

    My brother is the one on the left. I can ask him if they all chatted about gender roles before they shot it, but I’m pretty sure we know the answer to that.

  11. MaggieCat says

    You know, it’s a wonder I’ve had my television for over ten years, given my temptation to throw things at it. Heh.

    This is one of the handy things about having so many cat toys on hand — they fly well but don’t weigh enough to break anything. And as a bonus, it entertains the cat. You know, I always wondered why she liked Survivor so much…

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