If there's one thing that's as synonymous with the Super Bowl as football, it has to be the variety of expensive commercials. Every year, we see an avalanche of entertaining and/or heartfelt advertisements premiere during the big game, and while many get celebrated for years, some draw the immense ire of viewers, most notably within the online community. This year, it looks like a Dodge Ram commercial set the net ablaze with reactions ranging from contemplative to hostile. Check out the controversial Dodge ad below.
The ad's opening definitely does not convey what's revealed to be the selling point in its final moments. Fading in on a sermon from the late Martin Luther King. Jr., the commercial cycles through a series of heroics performed by a diverse array of people, with the Civil Rights icon preaching the virtues of servitude and charity. However, in its final moments, the uplifting footage of doctors, soldiers, firefighters, and other helpful professionals gets interrupted by a Ram truck barreling towards the camera, which didn't exactly fit with MLK's message.
The backlash against the Dodge commercial has been nothing if not swift. Some have criticized it for being in bad taste, while others have simply labeled it one of the weirder ads of the year -- which is saying something, considering what we saw from John Wick star Keanu Reeves (ever the eternal badass) riding a motorcycle into the sky. Some quickly flocked to social media to voice some (admittedly NSFW) shock at the ad's content.
That was not the only response to the Ram ad, obviously. Other folks who saw the commercial also seemed more in pure disbelief at what they had seen.
Comedian George Wallace, who always likes to embrace the flip side of any given situation, has this sarcasm-heavy comment.
The rationale for why the commercial doesn't work seems to vary specifically from person to person online. That said, one clear through-line is that many thought it was in poor taste for King's words to be used for capitalistic reasons in this fashion, especially as Black History Month is now underway. In fact, the use of that particular speech even earned the advertisers some pointed flak, with Current Affairs re-editing the video to incorporate MLK's words from later in the speech that criticize manipulative advertisers. (That video has since been removed at the request of Chrysler.)
CinemaBlend has more to offer from all the latest Super Bowl commercials (not to mention some awesome trailers like the ones released for Solo: A Star Wars Story and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom) so make sure to keep an eye out. With the Super Bowl now in our rear view, hop over to our midseason premiere guide to see what other shows are set to debut this spring!
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Originally from Connecticut, Conner grew up in San Diego and graduated from Chapman University in 2014. He now lives in Los Angeles working in and around the entertainment industry and can mostly be found binging horror movies and chugging coffee.