Update #2: Since many people don’t seem to believe that Quiznos didn’t play a role, or at least didn’t have an understanding that the video was being made, I placed a call to Playboy to see if they could shed some light on Quiznos involvement (or lack of involvement) in regards to this video. Here is the statement they gave me:
“In tough economic times, more people than ever are turning to fast food options as a way to stretch their paycheck.Â Playboy.com has taken note of this trend with its own ‘video salute’ to lunchtime. The siteâ€™s editors recognized that Quiznos seems to have a good sense of humor about their brand, and didnâ€™t hesitate in selecting them as one of the best bargains out there.”
When pressed with specific questions about if Quiznos had knowledge of the video’s release or gave tacit approval of the video, Playboy did not directly address my question, but simply replied with this statement:
“Playboy.com is responsible for the video and put it together as its ‘salute to lunchtime’.”
Does the mystery continue?
Update: Confusion is swirling online as to whether or not Quiznos had any involvement in making this video.Â We knew all along that it was produced by Playboy, but the assumption from most seemed to be that the prominent featuring of a Quiznos sub made clear Quiznos was part of it. AdAge reports that they have spoken with Quiznos, and the company has denied any involvement in the ad. However, many bloggers seem skeptical.
“It seems unlikely that Playboy independently produced a viral video advertising their sandwiches.”
“Weâ€™re calling bullshit, especially after watching that creepy sex-addled talking oven spot theyâ€™ve been running.”
“We can’t help but wonder just how many people over at Quiznos are loving (even hoping) this thing gets as much exposure as it’s getting. We still think there’s some shenanigans going on here.”
Oh. My. God. I cannot believe that Quiznos made this ad.Â First off, for those of you unfamiliar, this ad title/concept is based off the popular viral internet video “2 girls, 1 cup.” If you haven’t seen the video before, don’t bother looking it up. I can’t even begin to describe it to you in any level of detail without losing half my readers, but lets just say that it involves 2 women, eating, a cup, human excrement, and vomit. Enough. I don’t even want to say more.
Well some marketing genius over at Quiznos decided that a phrase (2 girls, 1 cup) that most users of the internet associate with one of the most disgusting, revolting and abhorrent things they have ever seen in their lives, should also be associated with the Quiznos brand name! Yay! Think Quiznos! Think human feces and vomit!
The execution of the ad is no less appalling than the fact that some moron even thought up this idea in the first place.Â Two months ago, we asked in good fun if the new Padma Lakshmi Hardee’s commercial was “Soft Core Porn.” Ha! We were just joshing you. Compared to that ad, this one is like Deep Throat 7 – Tonsil’s Revenge. We also wondered if the Stacker 2 “6 hour power” ad was the most sexually explicit ad ever. Ha! That ad might as well have featured bunny rabbits and snowflakes compared to this one.
A YouTube video of the commercial is below the fold. I will tell you that while there is no nudity, this ad is about as NSFW as it can possibly be short of nudity or actual sexual intercourse – pay attention to those headphones people, there is plenty of sound! Be sure to keep reading on for my full thoughts on why this is such a horrendously awful ad.
So we have a few problems here. For starters, readers of this blog know that I think Quiznos sandwiches taste disgusting. I was already associating them with excrement and vomit. Now Quiznos has basically taken the next step and formalized my suspicions: even people in their marketing department can see the link between the taste of human excrement and vomit and the taste of their sandwiches! Otherwise, how would they have thought up this ad?
The next issue, of course, is that the two models, 21 year old Kari Nautique, and Playboy playmate Hiromi Oshima, are making noises, and writhing around, as if they are mid-orgasm while eating the sandwich. Not to mention deliberately allowing the “mayo” to become smeared all over their faces from their messy eating. I don’t even think we need to broach the subject of the phallic shape of Quizno’s sandwiches.Â Oh yeah, and of course, they are sitting on a bench wearing bikinis while eating the sandwich, because why wouldn’t they be?
Now as a 28 year-old male, I’m not complaining about a hot 21 year-old in a bikini. Besides, sex sells. I get it, and I don’t have a problem with that. But who is the target market for this ad? Obviously not women. Probably not old people. Â I’m guessing 18 – 34 year old males is the exact target demographic they are going for.Â Well, I fall into that demographic.Â When I’m watching an ad that is trying to sell me something using sex, I should either be turned on by it or excited by the idea of watching it. Watching this ad, I felt neither of those things. I felt gross, icky and uncomfortable just watching it from the privacy of my own desk and computer screen.Â That’s me, a 28 year-old male. Imagine how offended/uncomfortable a woman of any age or a parent might be when they see this? Oh, and I never even mentioned the fact that Quiznos made this ad in collaboration with Playboy.
Now I could make some bold proclaimation like “I will never eat at Quizno’s again!” but that would be meaningless, because I never eat at Quizno’s anyways, because their food is horrid.Â But if you are a parent, and you ever take your kid to Quizno’s, stop doing so immediately. Seriously. I’m not into drawing lines for how far advertising should go, but this ad makes anti-line-drawers suddenly realize that yep, now that I’ve seen this, I know the definition of crossing the line, and this is it.
So just to re-cap the stupidity of Quizno’s on this:
- Name our ad after the most disgusting viral video ever? Check.
- Offend anyone over the age of 35 and probably almost any female? Check.
- Make even your target demo of 18-34 year old males feel uncomfortable? Check.
- Associate your food with BOTH human excrement AND vomit? CHECK.
Well, you did it Quiznos. You made possibly the most appaling, offensive commercial possible. Now thousands, if not millions, of people who weren’t already doing so will begin to associate your food with vomit and shit. Reapeat after me: Quiznos = vomit & shit, vomit & shit, vomit & shit. Well done Quiznos marketing department, well done.