McDonald’s and other giant fast food restaurants have often come under fire for the health risk they present to the general population because of their products. A new television spot targets McDonald’s by showing just how dangerous junk food is.
Known as the McDonald’s death ad or the “Consequences” clip, the 39-second video aired in the US the other night but, – as the Washington Post notes – it has been causing a stir even before that.
While previous similar campaigns tried to tone down the aggressiveness of the message, which always remained “junk food kills,” this one doesn’t beat around the bush.
Designed by the non-profit organization Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, the ad shows that junk food leads to obesity and other serious health problems, which can lead to death.
As noted above, it doesn’t beat around the bush in delivering the point home: the ad shows a woman crying over the dead body of a man. In one of his hands, he’s clutching a McDonald’s sandwich.
“[It] features an off-tune McDonald’s theme song playing while a weeping women stands above a dead man. As the camera pans away, the golden McDonald’s arches are drawn over the man’s feet,” the Washington Post notes.
The tagline is “I was lovin’ it,” yet another throwback at the original McDonald’s motto “I’m lovin’ it.” “Tonight, make it vegetarian,” the ad further says.
“Susan Levin, the director of nutrition education at PCRM, says the group hopes the ad educates people on the dangers of eating fast food,” the Washington Post further notes.
“McDonald’s would say, ‘We have a healthy menu.’ They spend billions of dollars to convince us that’s true. I think it’s naive to assume that everyone thinks that eating at McDonald’s is wrong for you,” Levin explains, in response to those who say McDonald’s is not the only one responsible for the obesity epidemics.
In the end, this ad is meant to show that McDonald’s commercials are deceiving people into thinking junk food is not really as unhealthy as they say it is or, even worse, that it’s actually good for them, Levin reveals.
As expected, McDonald’s is not happy about the ad, saying it deliberately sets out to make of it the bad guy – when that’s certainly not the case.
“This commercial is outrageous, misleading and unfair to all consumers. McDonald’s trusts our customers to put such outlandish propaganda in perspective, and to make food and lifestyle choices that are right for them,” Bridget Coffing, VP of McDonald’s Global Communications, says in a statement for the aforementioned publication.
Below is the ad. *Some discretion is recommended when viewing it as it may be considered offensive.