Brand Suicide?

BBC World or

Yes I have been asking myself the same question for the last two days. I wouldn’t have believed that such a tacky ad could have even been on TV. But I have already seen it on two different days so it probably is true. (Please BBC and Nick Gowing, tell me this is an elaborate joke on the run up to April Fool’s Day!)

To all those wondering what on earth I am ranting about, here’s what happened. For the last two days while watching X-Files on AXN I happened to see this vague kind of ad. An ad that you would typically associate with a brand like (to the clueless- it is like linkedin- only for matrimonial deals- presumably for Indians wanting to get married (traditionally modern and online) and you get to share your password with your parents- ok! ok!).

This advertisement starts with a few stereotyped scenarios where parents of potential grooms and brides along with the latters (is that a word? I meant to say with the potential bride and the potential groom but that was longish- sorry for interrupting again!) are meeting up. The grooms once again look like stereotyped Indian men from the 70s and 80s (I’m sorry but I’m not going to describe that to you).  There is one scenario where a young woman hails one of the kinda stereotyped men on a motorbike (presumably with ulterior matrimonial motives) and asks him: “Are you Sri Krishna?”  The next scene (or maybe the background voices of parents) talk about how many Indian men abroad lose their jobs because of the recession.

Cut to text which says: Local grooms preferred (or something to that effect- this ad so scandalised me I couldn’t even remember it properly) More Indian men abroad lose their jobs because of the recession.

All this would have been fine really, if this had really been an ad for But the scandalising bit came later…

Immediately following the text comes a scene of Nick Gowing (from BBC) reading out “Many local stories have global connections”


I mean honestly- who did BBC World hire to do this ad?

I can already think of plenty of other situations and scenarios where local stories have global connections. None of them need have  involved stereotyped Indian matrimonial situations.

Is this a desperate effort by BBC to target a different market in India? (I’m sorry but they would only watch the local news in any case!)

Why on earth would a brand like BBC (especially in India where news coming out of BBC is still regarded by many as the best) put on air an ad that wasnt even funny (in the way that the Happy Dent gum ad was- you know the one where the domestics chew gum to keep their teeth so shiny white that the royal folks in those houses dont use electric bulbs- talk about carbon footprints- or teethmarks in this case!)

If someone thought this was funny- they were wrong. I would have given you an online link to watch the ad on the internet but I can’t find it. I haven’t seen it on any of the other channels as well.

Which is what makes me suspicious that this is probably a joke leading up to 1st April or an X-Files special BBC ad (except this is the nth rerun for the X Files series). The truth is out there!


6 Comments Add yours

  1. Lav says:

    Talk about stereotypes. If this ad was for real – like not an April Fools Day one – I’m annoyed with BBC for falling into the pit of sensationalist ad makers and relegate them to the lost cause bucket in my office cube

    1. sr256 says:

      You have a lost cause bucket in your cube? Sounds nice, can I chip in for dumping stuff? Anyways yes I think this is rather annoying. I’m still trying to make sense of it.

  2. Sunanda says:

    What the #$%^?!!! I need to see this one! I mean who, how, what the @#$%? I can’t even say anything coherently degrading about the ad! IT’s that bizarre!

    1. sr256 says:

      I know I tried my hand at looking for the ad online but I could not find it anywhere, it is so bizarre I still can’t believe it. If I see it again today during X-files i’ll know.

  3. Mrs.Ramanujan says:

    I was even more disappointed to see Nick Gowing associated with the ad.What a let down!

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