Cadbury’s latest Creme Egg advert has received a number of complaints from viewers, due to the fact that it features two men kissing.
The TV advert, made to celebrate the chocolate brand’s ‘Golden Goobilee’ - celebrating five decades of Creme Eggs - introduces viewers to a number of characters, enjoying the fondant filled chocolate treat in a variety of ways.
The men in question are seen sharing a Creme Egg while kissing.
The advert was first shown on 4 January 2021, and has racked up a total of 40 official complaints since.
Reasons for complaints
A spokesperson for the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) said that complainants of the ad have raised “various concerns”, including:
- The ad is offensive to those who share Christian beliefs, particularly in the content of Easter
- The ad is offensive as one scene shows two men eating one creme egg, and which is inappropriate for children to view
- The ad is too sexual, particularly the scene in which two men eat one creme egg, and which is inappropriate for children to view
- The ad is irresponsible on the grounds that it encourages people to break current public health guidelines, as the men are in close contact
However, a Subway billboard advert, released on 11 January, featuring a heterosexual couple kissing, has received no complaints.
“I can confirm that [the ASA] has not received any complaints about this ad,” said the spokesperson.
‘Cadbury has always been a progressive brand’
In response to the reception its newest advert has received, Cadbury released a statement defending the content.
A spokesperson said: “Cadbury has always been a progressive brand that spreads a message of inclusion, whether it is through its products or brand campaigns.
“We are proud of our Golden Goobilee advert which celebrates the many ways that everyone can enjoy a Cadbury Creme Egg.
“To illustrate this and showcase the joy our products bring, a clip of a real life couple sharing a Cadbury Creme Egg was included in the advert.”
‘Does anyone see how ridiculous this is?’
Callum Sterling, one half of the real life couple featured in the advert sharing a Creme Egg with his boyfriend, Dale K Moran, took to Instagram to respond to some of the backlash that the advert has received.
Sterling shared a video on his Instagram of a Maybelline lipstick advert, which showed Lynda Carter in a swimming pool, saying sexually suggestive phrases.
Sterling wrote: “So it’s ok when an advert sexualises a woman, a caucasian woman, THIRTY SEVEN years ago even, to benefit the male gaze and make other women feel inadequate if they do not live up to this beauty standard.
“But it’s not okay, in 2021, to have an advert of a multi racial (stike one) gay couple (strike two) on your screens for 10 seconds (strike three) eating/kissing/sexualised (strike four). Does anyone see how ridiculous this is?”
Sterling goes on to say how proud he and his boyfriend are for becoming “the faces of this moment”, and that the love they have received “totally outweighs the fear based negative comments”.
He continues: “The only way for people to get used to it is to normalise it, and how else to normalise than by seeing it on your screens.”
While the advert has received some complaints, support for the two men, and for the advert, has been forthcoming online, with many taking to Twitter to express their praise.
Scott Bryan, TV critic and broadcaster, wrote on Twitter: “The latest Cadbury’s Creme Egg advert features a same sex couple kissing with a Creme Egg. To anyone ‘offended’ by this: you realise that we’ve seen straight couples make out thousands of times on television already and we don’t complain. Wonder why you are?”
Another Twitter user wrote: “For every gammon that will no longer eat a Creme Egg, I will eat two. It’s a difficult mission, but one I am willing to face head-on.”
Someone else tweeted: “The only problem I have with the new Cadbury’s Creme Egg advert is that it might lead people to think I might share mine. Never gonna happen!”
“Great advert @CadburyUK! Always fantastic to see some inclusivity on TV. The ‘outrage’ proves we need more of this. I am not sharing my #CremeEgg though!” Wrote another.