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Jack in the Box commercial about menopause--funny or offensive, or a little of both?

By Expert HERWriter May 6, 2009 - 10:39pm
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I was watching TV the other day and saw an ad for Jack in the Box that stars a menopausal woman and Jack. I have to say, I don't think I've ever seen an ad for a fast food restaurant that stars a woman in menopause.

If you want to view it, go to www.jackinthebox.com and then click on "commercials" on the left and it should be the ad on the far left. You can see the lady in her pink dress.

Frankly, I wasn't sure whether I liked it or not. I thought they were making fun of menopausal women. My take was that menopausal women are not taken seriously because we're just hysterical. But it's no laughing matter as I know first hand that very few people take us seriously and that it's a real problem for lots of women.

This may be because I've lived it and seen and heard too many women who are silently suffering that it's hard for me to find the humor in it. But it goes to show you how many women are menopausal when Jack in the Box dedicates a commercial to it.

Then again, I have a dear friend who saw it and thought it was really funny. But she's a bit younger and hasn't hit menopause yet so maybe that's the difference.

I'd love it if you'd follow the link and watch the ad and then post your thoughts below. Is it funny to you, or offensive, or somewhere in between? Michelle

Add a Comment68 Comments

EmpowHER Guest

When I read this, I thought about the Carl's Jr. commercial a few years ago with Jessica Simpson - however, that commercial objectified women while this ad seems lighthearted and not at all offensive.

May 15, 2009 - 3:31pm
EmpowHER Guest

TO Anonymous at 5:23 p.m poster... I agree! People just want to find something to be offended by at every turn. Everyone just takes themselves WAY too seriously. Misogyny? Pah-lease...If people stopped whining about everything and just lived life, maybe they'd be less offended. This commercial is no different than poking fun at pimply-faced teenagers, raunchy college students, moms with kids running around the house, or old men with erectile dysfunction (and I've seen plenty of commercials that poke fun at them...). The fact is we need to find humor in the HORMONAL fluctuations in EVERYBODY's life, or else life IS just kind of miserable at all stages, isn't it?

May 15, 2009 - 7:55am
EmpowHER Guest

People, people, people...PLEASE...it's a 30-second commercial that will be off broadcast TV in no time and will fade into anonymity (like most of those commenting) as soon as the Internet discovers the next best thing in the world.

The spot pokes fun at just one aspect of the human condition. Watch TV for any length of time and virtually every NON-tragic aspect of life becomes the brunt of commercialism.

Menopause is many things to many people who are affected by it directly and indirectly, but it is NOT tragic, unless the "suffering" choose NOT to deal with it appropriately.

Laughter really IS the best medicine, so give your indignation a break and enjoy the humor. And if so inclined, buy a Tropical Smoothie, they're delicious (I didn't think Jack could improve the Mango, but he did by adding Banana!)...and you WILL feel cooler!

Otherwise, don't worry...you will not have to wait very long before something else comes along to give you permission to vent your animosity.

May 14, 2009 - 5:23pm
EmpowHER Guest

I am in Menopause (and have been dealing with the symptoms for 10 years now). I think this commercial is hysterical. It always makes me chuckle when I see it. Humor is so important to everyone's lives and ESPECIALLY to menopausal women. We haven't much choice about what meopause is going to do to our lives, the only choice is how we deal with it.

May 14, 2009 - 10:25am
EmpowHER Guest

JITB also has another relatively new commercial promoting the mini sirloin burgers. They use midgets or little people or dwarfs as small cowboys and they use trick photography to make the cattle look as small as schnauzers as they say in the song. I think Jack in the Box is just using a very creative ad agency and they are making some very funny non-mainstream commercials.

May 14, 2009 - 9:54am
EmpowHER Guest

I thought it was totally stupid. Jack in the Box is now on my boycott list. Surely people can think of other ways to promote their business. Idiots.

May 14, 2009 - 12:50am
EmpowHER Guest

I love that Jack in the Box commercial. It's really funny and not at all in bad taste. I agree that it has elements of the Desperate Housewives look and feel.

And for anyone who doesn't think men get equal billing at being the butt of the joke in commercials about "private matters", take a look at some of those commercials for Avodart, etc. for the treatment of benign prostatic enlargement. Especially that one of the four guys on the golf course who keep having to take potty breaks over and over because of their urinary frequency and urgency. I'm a guy and I think that one's hilarious too!

May 13, 2009 - 10:42pm
EmpowHER Guest

i am a 26 year old gay male and i thought it was totally unfunny and midly offensive.

May 12, 2009 - 10:50pm
EmpowHER Guest

Having watched several friends go through menopause, it is something I'm pretty glad I will not ever have to go through. However, I think that the use of menopause to illustrate just how cool and refreshing a smoothie is kind of genius. Sure, it could be interpreted as trivializing a natural condition experienced by women as they age--but it could also be seen as the only advertisement directly speaking to a massive demographic of women that are largely ignored by Madison Ave.

For example, you can't watch TV for more than ten minutes, it seems, without seeing four ads for something to do with erectile dysfunction. Everything is about how dudes have to keep that willy hard, and the women in those commercials are trivialized as being co-dependents whose only goal in life is to ride on an artificially enhanced joy-rod. Even when talking about something that's embarrassing to dudes, the advertising has to find a way to objectify the ladies. Where is the media marketing towards middle-aged women that's at all directing itself towards their issues?

Honestly, you've got to be pretty hard-pressed to find any. Meanwhile, JitB is taking a pretty big risk with this advertisement. Not only are they potentially stepping on toes by mixing edgy humor with a serious topic, they are specifically mentioning one demographic and ignoring all else. Are they trying to sell smoothies to dudes with deflated dingies? No. Is the woman "street rat crazy" because she's probably married to a dude with one of those? Quite possibly. Can we put two and two together that maybe JitB is offering 24 ounces of delicious relief to women suffering menopause, and could not care less about flaccid men? I think it could be argued as such, yes.

Anyway, whatever. I'm not going to convince anybody one way or the other, but thought I'd add my two cents.

May 11, 2009 - 8:55pm
EmpowHER Guest

I must add one more comment here. I think the ad was no worse than others provided by Jack in the Box, and the stereotyping was pretty ugly. However, there is something else going on here. Seems advertisers are beginning to acknowledge the buying power of the 50ish and older female population and branching out from pushing meds for osteoporosis. I guess even a tasteless ad is a positive sign.

May 11, 2009 - 2:52pm
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