Over the last few weeks, many companies have been compelled (through litigation), to come clean about some of the supposed health benefits that they have advertised, in conjunction with the use of their products.
Pom Wonderful has just been forced by a judge to cease and desist in their claims that drinking Pom reduces cancer risks. Both Reebok, and last week Sketchers, have been forced to pay millions of dollars in consumer refunds because of ads stating that the use of their “Tone” shoes, actually helps to tone the body. Then there’s my personal favorite, the settlement against Nutella for implying that their sweet chocolate spread is healthy. C’mon. Even the actress playing the mom in the commercial can barely keep a straight face. So for the guy who’s walking down the streets in his “Shape Up” sneaks, nibbling a Nutella sandwich, while intermittently gulping down Pom Wonderful from that embarrassing-looking bottle, sorry to burst your bubble, you are decidedly not healthy. In fact, you have a week to live. We’ll bury you in the shoes.
These incidents make the companies, (who so often peddle their products with the skill and flair of a first-year pimp), look bad–sure. But they also reflect the stupidity of the average consumer. Who the hell still believes commercials, anyway? Lazy people, for one. People who haven’t figured out that basically every delicious thing, especially if it’s processed and mass-produced, is unhealthy in some way. People who don’t remember that their ugly-ass 80s “Pump” shoes did not make them jump higher. And people who haven’t bothered to educate themselves enough to know that Nutella is OBVIOUSLY unhealthy, yet have kids anyway, throwing them a chocolate sandwich to quell their crying.
Considering both the laughably bad commercials that are always out there, and the gullibility of the consumer, here are…
Nine Products Facing Claims of False Advertising:
(as shown in excerpts from court documents)
1) Wrangler Jeans–“Even if you believe that a quarterback who holds multiple records for longevity, would still play football recreationally with his friends, in the rain, wearing jeans, which he must know (as a world-class athlete) are inappropriate for playing in, would everyone plating be wearing jeans? The ad paints a joyous picture that the jeans can’t possibly live up to.”
2) Quacker Factory–“Advertisements on the QVC home shopping channel give the impression that it is possible to receive garments in sizes other than 3X and above, yet plaintiff (name redacted) claims she attempted to purchase the “Glory of Jesus Tunic Sweater”…
…in a size Small, for five months with no success.
3) Grout Bully–“The product claims to have a ‘nano-technology formula’ that penetrates into the grout, cleaning it. Yet moments later, it offers five different colors, and indicates that you can change the color of your grout at will. Why would a cleaning product come in different colors? This product is simply grout paint, which will certainly help to eliminate dirty grout, by giving you the ability to cover the dirt with paint…”
4) Cymbalta–“Though numerous commercials warn of side effects such as worsening depression, unusual changes in behavior, suicide, danger to children, glaucoma, painful liver problems causing death, yellowing of the skin and eyes, high fever, confusion, stiff muscles, a “possible life-threatening condition,” dizziness and fainting when standing, nausea, dry-mouth, and constipation, the makers of Cymbalta fail to mention that the only way that their product actually treats depression, is that all the new diseases you acquire from taking it, finally give you good reason to be depressed.”
5) Burger King–“Any expectation my client had of receiving fawning treatment similar to that of Ms. Hayek in the commercial, when ordering a garden fresh salad, was immediately dashed when my client was called a ‘fat douche’ by the cashier. Further, the ad implies that Hayek works for the Burger King company, and frankly, the quality of her acting in the commercial, gives the same impression…”
6) Golden Corral–“The commercial makes several inaccurate claims that are misleading to the consumer. The first is to suggest that the idea of two people splitting an appetizer is tantamount to lunacy. The second is to state the food is good, when everyone know’s that it isn’t.”
“In addition, your honor, we can present evidence proving that half the time, the Chocolate ‘Wonderfall’ is filled with recycled gravy.”
7) ASPCA–“False sympathies have been created in this commercial by improper use of a song obviously and famously meant to refer to a human, as opposed to an abused animal. Further, couples who have used “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” as their wedding song, feel obliged to donate money to the ASPCA, now believing that the discarded pets featured, represent their ideal love.”
8) Corona–“The commercial implies that the consumption of a Corona Beer will magically transport you to an island vacation, taking you away from the grind of the real world. The plaintiff contends that this didn’t actually happen, which is odd when one views the ad (exhibit A, below) practically guaranteeing that Corona Beer is so powerful, it will transport him or her from the “grind” of a live concert in a club, to the apparently much-more-relaxing and pleasurable dark empty beach.”
9) Arby’s–“The fact that this kind of dubious mind control is in a commercial, is criminally negligent! Independent studies have confirmed that Arby’s has created a jingle (“It’s good mood food”) that is so out-of-tune, so grating, that it actually puts people in a bad mood! And naturally, what does this obese country do when it’s in a bad mood? It eats fast food.”