I just saw the most amazing beer commercial. It's for Heineken and I think it's called The Date. My jaw dropped as I watched it capture, in a spectacularly creative way, all the promises and images the beer industry wants us to associate with drinking. A young ,vibrantly alive couple enter a unique trendy night club to a driving, pulsing big band beat. They're obviously A list customers since they enter through the back door and dance their way through the kitchen greeting and having fun with the help. They burst through the door into a kaleidoscope of excitement and activity. Everyone wants to greet them and the couple has one creative encounter after another with a hip eclectic cast of characters. After a brief, exuberent flurry of dance moves they arrive at their special table and clutch what makes it all possible: Heineken. The commercial was well crafted and a stunning appeal to the senses. Music and images created a primal momentum to view this as "the good life" that it was easy to forget it was a lie. The beer industry makes promises it can't deliever. Perhaps a more accurate image would be the nightclub at the end of the evening with the lost souls looking for connection or the next morning as the clean up crew comes. Many people have lost so much pursuing the fantasy. For them beer takes the fun and the friends rather than create them.
With children of alcoholics being at high risk to develop alcoholism the safest course is for them not to drink. That's hard to do in our alcohol environment. One way to do it is to play Spot the Lie when watching beer commercials on television. What does this say about beer? What is the commercial saying will happen if you drink beer? What does the commercial say beer does for friendship? What does beer mean for dating? Questions like these are great conversations for families and kids themselves. Talking is a great way to counteract these powerful messages.
Here's the link. What do you think.