In what seems to be an effort to gain some moral ground while arrogating over women’s uterus, the CBCP requested McDonald’s to pull out their ad of two children wooing each other. Mcdonald’s complied.Father Melvin Castro, Executive secretary of the CBCP Episcopal Commission on Family and Life, remarked the ad is “shallow” and “cheapens human relationships.” One must ask how the Mcdo ad’s “superficiality” deserves a pull out when the daily dose of Willie’s soft-porn harem has gone uncommented for years and made half-naked gyrating women an afternoon norm.
Let’s suspend our disbelief and pretend for a few minutes that the purpose of the advertisement is NOT to sell McDo products but teach the “the essence of the emotional relationship between a man and a woman” in 32 seconds. I solemnly swear this article has no smart-ass pedo comments.
Since we can always rely on the CBCP to be make mystery of things, we can hazard a guess it was the children’s agreement to a “relationship” thanks to McDo fries – that earned the old fogeys’ disapproval points. Fries for a relationship? Say it isn’t so.
What’s wrong with the ad’s portrayal of children? Our analysis of the ad is incomplete when we don’t factor in the context. It would be erroneous to use adult relationships as the barometer for children interaction and disregard the ad’s creative world that includes children’s lack of duplicity.
The ad reflects the reality that children do not fully know what emotional, romantic, adult relationships entail; evidenced by the boy’s “girls are too demanding; they want this, they want that” that is obviously not a statement based on experience, but an unexamined information most likely acquired from his trusted elders.
The girl’s “all I need is fries” is not an implication she’s “easy” or that her company can be bought readily. One must remember the ad cleverly reversed the Pinoy standard roles of courtship – it’s the girl who pursues the boy but without overtly displaying her better qualities or plying her intended with gifts. Like the boy, she has limited knowledge of what an adult relationship is. She won the boy over by shredding the unverified information that “relationships” (with girls) are difficult because girls are demanding or this girlfriend is an exception.
“All I need is fries” may be the ad’s subtle dig on the typical adult relationships loaded with biases and sometimes unfounded, irrational expectations, not a salient statement on what relationships are ought to be.
The ad does not deserve a pull out.
This is another instantiation of the CBCP misjudging humanity. Their error has not been limited to the pompous hijacking of a problem adolescents and adults have to deal with (the complexities of romantic relationships). It includes the insistence for rigid morality structures that fail to take into account the varying context it must operate under on top of the supremely fucked yardstick they use to decide what should be gone from television.
Perhaps CBCP should step away from their old fogey’s perspective and recall the days when they were unencumbered by thoughts of sex and malice shadowing the relationships of men and women.
Maybe a bag of fries sprinkled with weed will help.
Notes: A friend of mine commented on the Filipino dysfunction that females demand that their male partners shower them with material gifts, which makes the ad objectionable. Her comment is partly addressed in this post, but it deserves another 10 posts and 10 books in print. :)