Beer ads aren’t known for taking a stand on important social issues. In fact, they are usually testosterone-drenched clips stuffed full of macho stereotypes, interspersed with lingering shots of brews, babes and boobs. Basically, the sort of content that would make Germaine Greer choke on her tea when she's trawling YouTube.
But now, a series of TV spots, from American brand Bud Lite and starring Amy Schumer and Seth Rogen have thrown the traditional beer ad on it’s head. In the short clips, the two comedians get into the issues of marriage equality and the gender wage gap in a frank, and frankly hilarious, way.
“Gay weddings, they’re just like any wedding. You’ve got cringe-worthy speeches, the girl who is super ready to settle down, and cake,” the duo says in one. “Bud Lite proudly supports everyone's right to marry whoever they want.”
In the other, Schumer explains the fact that not only earn less than men but pay more for everyday products like shampoo and dry cleaning.
"That is double wrong! I’m calling everyone I know and I’m telling them about this and it’s got to stop!" an aghast Rogen tells Schumer as he phones his mother.
So what's behind these game-changing, genre-defying ads? Have advertising agencies and big alcohol companies realised that the days of “hard earned thirsts” and propagating male cliches are over? Or, have they cottoned on to the fact that if you pair two of the world's most famous comedians and get them to make headline-worthy, political statements you can generate a whole lot of publicity for your brand?
Who knows? And, does it even matter? Because the bottom line is that the marriage equality clip has already been viewed more than 560,000 times on YouTube, and the gender wage gap clip has been played 170,000 times in only a matter of days. No matter what the motivation, Bud Lite has gotten people watching, sharing and talking about two issues that we at marie claire are passionate about and we'll drink to that.