DEAR ALCOHOL COMMERCIALS: IT’S A DRINK, NOT A MIRACLE CURE FOR LIFE

Some people need alcohol to have fun. Some people need fun to have alcohol. Some people don’t need alcohol to have fun. And some people don’t need fun to have alcohol. So many options. So many personalities. A couple of potential problems that some people should maybe talk to some other people about. I’m not here to judge, though! Alcohol works for you in whatever way it works for you. That may be not at all, which is also great. I’ll still toast to you whenever the occasion presents itself.

Regardless of if you have a fully stocked bar at home, or stick to sparkling water, we can all agree that alcohol marketing is super … weird. First of all, who is approving these? It’s not just one person either. You and I both know that at these big companies who can afford prime time advertising spots the approval process is at least 2, if not double digits, people deep. Same with the marketing department for a certain Emu and his partner Doug. Please make that duo stop. It’s truly a crime against my time.

Bringing it back out of the sky, we have these entire departments who get pitched an idea and, as a whole, decide that what they’ve been presented with is acceptable to send to the masses. Let’s go deeper down this bottle. The majority of liquor commercials portray this vision of a luxurious social scene. Bottles being popped in very modern environments, often with some high profile celebrities holding a bottle and drinking something. They want you to believe it’s the alcohol, but there’s a 50/50 chance it’s something else entirely.

On the flip side of the liquor cork, you have frat boy beer brands. This is an entirely separate head scratcher of a commercial lineup. Almost exclusively outdoors in some secluded area. Apparently the beer can is the only thing in either the valley stream or on the mountain top. Narrated by what is, I can only guess, a lumberjack. Probably wearing flannel, jeans, and boots. Ironically, the more peaceful scene is more appealing than the crowded club one where everyone is trying to steal your bottle. I’d rather have my own can of watered down beer than have to fight for my bedazzled bottle of tequila. Just saying.

Then there’s wine commercials. Which fall somewhere awkwardly in between isolation and mosh pit. They are either only about the bottle and can be animated, can be realistic, but regardless it’s only the wine or it’s a girls night and they’re a couple bottles in. Which is essentially both beer and liquor commercials, but also slightly different and in between the two. Mostly because wine features women and all other alcohols feature men. A most curious segmentation of the marketing efforts.

Maybe you feel differently and that’s totally fine. You drink your alcohol and I’ll drink mine. Actually, I take that back. Don’t make me drink Fratty Natty. I’d much rather have a good bottle of tequila anyday. If we’re looking strictly at the commercials, though, outdoors all day long. I would also like for someone to answer this question for me: in liquor commercials, why are the bottles always embellished in some way? I don’t see the bottles at my local liquor store sporting chains or mini rhinestones. Collusion!

I think the main issue with alcohol commercials is that they don’t make any sense. Opening a can of beer does not sound like nature. It sounds like bottled up carbonation being let free. I could pop open a Coke and hear the same thing. Along the same stem, drinking liquor can be done in a small group on a quiet night and without having to get dressed up. Or even to put pants on to be honest. 

The main pour of this post is that I would just like a realistic alcohol commercial. Coors Light is the only one who has really mastered this. While I love my clydesdales as much as the next person, I for one do not own a horse and carriage for romantic rides in the first snowfall of the season. Do you also get confused when seeing these commercials on TV? Just show me some regular friends hanging out, pouring a drink, and seeing how many memories they can make.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this post and want to share it with them, that would be awesome. Sharing is caring, after all. Don’t forget to subscribe to get these in your inbox twice weekly and follow TRP on Twitter for frequent musings. Thanks for reading!


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