A Heinz mayonnaise ad featuring a gay
couple has come under attack in both Britain, where the ad is
running, and the United States. In Britain the ad received nearly
200 complaints before it was withdrawn, while The O'Reilly Factor
host Bill O'Reilly said the ad “confused” him.
The ad features a man with a thick New
York accent dressed in a deli outfit preparing lunches for a boy and
a girl. The children call the man “mum” as they approach a
kitchen island for their school lunches.
Another man enters the kitchen, grabs
his lunch, and says, “See you tonight love.”
“Hey, ain't you forgetting
something?” mum asks, and the couple share a kiss. “Love you.
Straight home from work, sweet cheeks,” mum adds as he sends the
In Britain, the ad, which began running
last Monday and is set to run for five weeks, has received 175
complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority, reports the online
edition of the Guardian. That puts in on track to be one of
the most complained-about ads of the year.
Many viewers reported that the ad was
“offensive” and that seeing two men kissing was “inappropriate.”
In a press release dated June 23rd,
Heinz UK said it had voluntarily withdrawn the commercial as of June
20th, saying: “The advertisement, part of a short-run
campaign, was intended to be humorous and we apologize to anyone who
Meanwhile, in the United States, The
O'Reilly Factor aired a segment concerning the ad featuring
panelists Bernald Goldberg, Jane Hall, and host Bill O'Reilly.
O'Reilly said he was “confused” by the ad, adding, “I just want
mayonnaise, I don't want to see two guys kissing.”
Bernard Goldberg found the ad more
light-hearted saying, “Bill, if you think a major corporation like
Heinz is trying to sell a product like mayonnaise by appealing to gay
people, and I say this in the best possible sense, you're nuts. This
is not a gay issue, it's a mayonnaise issue.”