Boycott Domino’s Pizza… It might save your marriage

I am so utterly offended by this ad, it’s not even funny to me. I can hear it now… “Lighten up, Matty.” “It’s just a joke, Matty.” Yeah, well… Is this how men are to be treated? Let’s break it down. (subject matter below may be considered PG-13 by some)

First, I will concede the following:

  1. Men are horny all the time. Oh, but by the way, lots of women are, too.
  2. Men don’t care if it’s a quickie sometimes. Oh, but by the way, lots of women don’t either.
  3. Most men don’t need 30 minutes. Oh, but by the way, lots of women don’t either.

Also, I am assuming these two are married… but it doesn’t really matter… a long term relationship is implied. Ok, now that that’s out of the way. Let’s consider what is actually going on here.  I am going to translate this commercial for those of you who might not see the subtext:

Husband orders a pizza. Says to wife, “Honey, I have just ordered a pizza to be delivered. I have provided for our meal this evening. You don’t have to worry about it. By the way, since I have saved us some time which might otherwise have been spent going to a restaurant or preparing a meal, perhaps we could spend the time together, making love.” Wife says, “Why would I want to do that? You are an insensitive lover who doesn’t take my needs into account. I spit on your vulnerability. Making love is the most intimate act two people can share; it is how we connect with each other, but I would rather have a root canal than do it with you. In fact, this cup of coffee I’m holding gets me more hot than you do.”

Wow… all that from a cheesy pizza commercial? Yes, in fact, all that from a cheesy pizza commercial. Now, I understand what the joke is, ok. I am not devoid of a sense of humor. But this isn’t humor, in my opinion. This is a cheap joke based on a stereotype. It involves no wit or cleverness. This is 7th-grade-boy humor on par with fart jokes. What if the commercial was this: Two guys sitting in a room watching tv; one white, one black. Black guy hangs up the phone and says, “Pizza will be here in 30 min.” White guy says, “You’re black. You could run down there and pick it up and run back and it would take less time.” Not funny, right? Why? Because it’s based on a stereotype of black people being good at athletics. How about this: Two girls in a dorm room; one is white, one is asian. Asian girl hangs up the phone and says, “Pizza will be here in 30 min.” White girl says, “You’re asian, how many seconds is that?” Again, not funny. We know, almost instinctively, that stereotyping people based on their race is wrong. How come it’s ok to do it to men?    Ladies, let me tell you this as a stone-cold fact.  Women who treat their men this way, have men who cheat.  I can’t say it any more plainly than that.

This commercial is representative of what, I believe, is a serious issue going on in this country; namely the systematic reduction and ridicule of men; a stripping away of masculinity.  A few years ago, a burger chain ran commercials that showed men standing in supermarkets and kitchens staring at raw ingredients.  The tag line, “Without us, most guys would starve.”  Really?  Is this funny to anyone?  This is just school-yard bully behavior.  Tearing others down to build yourself up.

I hear the other side…. I really do….  I know that many people feel women have been repressed and oppressed and  ridiculed for decades… that this is just payback… a harmless zinger….  but, there’s no such thing, I’m sorry to say.  I like bumper stickers… I love it when someone makes a clever play with words… and one of my favorites is, “An eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind.”

So, am I serious in calling for a boycott?  ABSOLUTELY!  I haven’t eaten at that burger chain since those commercials, either!

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24 Responses

  1. Matty – I have to agree with you – but we need to take it a step further – anytime you are making fun of another person – no matter the sex, age, race whatever, you are demeaning a whole group of people. I love jokes, puns etc – but like you I found the commercial not funny. In my small group last night one of the women was talking about not talking smack about her spouse – and it’s actually changing the attitudes of several people in the group. I won’t talk badly about my husband behind his back, in front of him or to him because I have too much respect for him to do that. And I think the commercial just shows the disrespect that is being fostered in our society.

  2. littletiger,

    of course, I agree we should not make fun of ANY group in a stereotypical way… but, I find the current trend of man-bashing to be of a particularly, viral quality and quantity…

    I spent too many years in a relationship where my supposed “partner” regularly bashed me in front of my back and behind it… people joke about the “fragile male ego”… but, it’s really not funny

    thanks for reading and commenting!!

    Matty

  3. Huh. My take on it was this: Awesome! We can have sex for 2 minutes and still have 28 minutes to do something else… like shop online for a more manly robe! I guess I have a lighter attitude towards commercials and t.v. in general because most of it is junk anyway. I do, however, agree with you about treating all people in a respectful manner. BTW – boycott fast food because it is BAD for you – not because their commercials are in bad taste. (I would think that the chef in you wouldn’t allow you to consume food that nasty anyway.)

  4. andi-

    I cooked under a chef who’s favorite restaurant was McDonald’s. To each his own, I guess.

    There is no greater barometer of pop culture than the television. We have no great painters, poets or authors. The fact that CNN devotes any airtime to Jamie Lynn Spears is proof of this. I am concerned that the good done by the feminist movement in this country, is being undone in a backlash against men and masculinity. I believe it is much harder to be a young boy in this country than a young girl. I have read many studies that show girls being shown favoritism in elementary school classrooms and boys being discriminated against. It is, IMO, a dangerous and frightening trend.

    Thanks for reading!

    Matty

  5. I’m not denying that some fast food tastes good. I’m ragging on how incredibly unhealthy it is.

    The culture that our kids are growing up in is vastly different than the culture we grew up in and the culture our parents grew up in… I am terrified to see the things that are considered normal and the things that are glamorized. Do I think that boycotting a pizza chain is going to help our nation turn itself around? Sadly, no. Do I think that teaching my children to eat healthy foods, to turn off the t.v. and play outside, to have self-esteem, to know that they are God’s creation and that they are loved by Him is going to help my children deal with this crazy world that they live in? Absolutely.

    I see it this way… I sadly do not believe that I can change the world through boycotts, petitions and votes. (I guess I’m pessimistic that way) I do however believe in a mighty God, personal relationships and the power of love. I don’t believe I can change the world for my kids, but I can impact my kids for the world.

  6. andi –

    of course you’re right… the 3 or 4 people who read my blog boycotting anything isn’t likely to make an impact… maybe it will cause someone to stop and think…

    you’re a great mom and a great friend and that’s what’s most important in the long run! if your kiddos grow up to have half the character, grace, kindness and love for GOD that you have, then the world will be a better place by default!

    Matty

  7. I would like to be the only person on this thread catering to the logic of the “other” side. First of all, if you are planning on a boycott because of the bad commercial, then wouldn’t it make more sense to go after the advertising companies? It’s the advertisers that tell the companies what sells to our culture. If we’re trying to blame one company for the decline of civilization, shouldn’t it be put on the people making the commercial, and not a pizza chain?

    I personally believe that this whole argument is simply trying to pick a fight. I do agree that actual discrimination based of race, sex or religion are all reprehensible qualities, but on the other hand pointing out stereotypes, that everyone knows are not always true, is just a way to make light of a serious situation. A joke is just a joke. If our world becomes so politically correct that every joke is seen as an attack on a certain group of people, then groups of people like yourselves would end up boycotting every business that tried to have a sense of humor, no matter how immature. Any person you ask is going to say that they have a sense of humor, but if the thing that offends you the most is a bad joke off of a TV commercial, then your sense of humor seems to need a tune-up. I’m sure that many of the writers in this thread are hilarious people, but this type of reaction to such a trivial commercial begs the question: what kind of jokes are people allowed to make without offending anyone?

    And if you want to dissect this commercial as far as you did, why not argue the other side. The woman in the commercial says “What are we gonna do with the other 28 minutes?”, saying that after the two share a very intimate few minutes together, she wants to have more to look forward to in spending more time together. If the joke were that she would leave and come back when the pizza arrived, then maybe that would be more offensive, because she’s using her husband. But no one’s saying that. The woman still wants to spend time with her husband, despite his short comings.

    Oh, and just a simple correction about the burger ads. The line was “without us, SOME guys would starve.”, not MOST. The ad made a point that is a fact, some men cannot cook at all, and are not willing to try, so they eat fast food for almost every meal. This group of men would have a hard time without fast food. That’s all the commercial was saying, not that all men are too stupid to cook.

    I hope that this comment actually gets published. And it was about time someone pointed out the opposing side.

    Jake

  8. Jake –

    Thanks for the comment. And, I never stop a comment on my site just because the person disagrees with me. I believe there is a fundamental problem in this country with the way men are portrayed as blundering, sex-starved, selfish meat-heads. It happens regularly, and it is affecting the way boys are being brought up in this country and how they are treated by same-sex peers, opposite-sex peers and persons in authority.

    That being said, perhaps I read too much into this ad. It won’t change anything if I don’t eat Domino’s pizza. Just like nothing changed at that burger place after the celebrity car wash commercial scandal. Their ads are still among the dumbest, sexist, and unfunny things on the air.

    Jake, this blogger hopes you will come back to the site, be a regular reader and commenter!

    Thanks,
    Matty

  9. Step 1 – Go to the doctor, have stick in ass removed.
    Step 2 – Seek therapy, deal with underlying issues with woman and self-confidence.

  10. Johnathan –

    thanks for your… um… comment/advice/jab/snipe.

    It would seem you didn’t understand what I was trying to communicate (much as the folks over at youtube didn’t get it either).

    I am not offended personally because I have any problems with women or self-confidence. I am offended because this is just another case of male-bashing.

    Matty

  11. If the tables were reversed and it was some lame attempt at a joke about a woman you can bet that a bunch of feminists would be in an uproar. But because it’s about a white, straight male… it’s supposed to be funny.

    My husband has often wondered what would happen if there was a white, straight, male parade downtown…. It’s okay to have a Black Pride parade or Gay Pride or Women’s Rights or Disabled American parade… (and I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with having any of those parades) but you can bet if we celebrate the “straight white males” people would be screaming racist pigs! I do think that males are getting slammed quite a bit. Sometimes it is in lame pizza commercials and sometimes it’s a bigger deal than that (like in schools). Like I said before, the best way I can deal with it is to raise up my kids to have respect.

  12. andi –

    hmmmmm…. a straight white male parade…

    LET’S DO IT… tell Alan I’m in!

    Matty

  13. That’s because white straight males have never suffered any form of serious discrimination, besides the occasional commercial or T.V. jab here and there.
    Anyone that equates the difficulty a black or gay person would face in their personal or private life to what a white, straight male would face is just an idiot.
    You can have a parade after you have a hundred+ years of serious oppression.

  14. Johnathan –

    Is it your position, then, that no group can have any pride in itself until it has suffered “a hundred+ years of serious oppression”? Because that is an untenable position, I’m sorry to say. People have pride in being fans of sports teams. In fact, when sports teams win championships, they often have parades… no oppression required!

    Matty

  15. Well said, Matty. All of it.

    Here’s to sex once every two months whether I need it or NOT!

    Randy

  16. Sup, Matt…this is Marcus from the Men’s group…saw the link to your bloq through your email and thought i would check it out.

    Anyways, about the commercial. The first time i saw it i laughed. I guess i just didn’t get what you got out of it, but i do agree with the point you are trying to make beyond the stupid commercial. It reminds me of a book i read a while ago…”Tender Warrior” or something like that, anyways in one section it talked about how today’s culture has destroyed men and masculinity.

  17. Marcus –

    Hey, thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. I really appreciate you reading!

    Matt

  18. This is silly. The joke is about sex and sex only. He ejaculates prematurely and it’s funny because it’s implied. The reward is for those clever enough to get the innuendo.

    Demasculating men is just our special way of balancing out the over-sexing and objectifying of women. There is NOTHING telling about our culture in this. The commercial provides only insight into the state of advertising in our country which most of us don’t pay attention to because we are smart own DVRs…or are too poor to watch TV.

    Your “Honey, I have just ordered a pizza to be delivered. I have provided for our meal this evening. You don’t have to worry about it.” bit was a little over the top. It made your whole point seem a little far fetched and hard to believe. This whole thing feels like a lame attempt to turn the tables on people who think men treat women poorly.

    In the end it’s just a commercial with a sex joke. I’m surprised it was aired, but that’s just the trend nowadays.

  19. Mike –

    Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment.

    Please understand, I got the joke. My point is that the joke never should have been made. Not, “it never should have been made in a commercial” but that looking at your lover and tearing him down, cutting him to the quick and basically telling him he’s a loser should never be done, period. Yet, it is perfectly acceptable in this culture to make this joke, to cut down a man. That’s not right. If this commercial made a crass joke about a woman or a minority, no one would put up with it. But, because it’s a joke at a man’s expense, it’s deemed ok… well, it’s not ok.

    Hope you continue to read!

    Matty

  20. Matty wrote:
    ” … stereotyping people based on their race is wrong”

    Carla’s response:
    It is?

    From an entertainment standpoint, character sketches are dependent on stereotyping. Can you imagine the sort of blah cartoons, movies and fiction novels we’d have without it?

    Sure, there’s folks out there who get wadded up over this ‘necessary evil’. Remember all the hooplah over Disney’s *Shark’s Tale*?
    * http://www.teach-nology.com/forum/showthread.php?p=451#post451
    * http://us.vdc.imdb.com/user/ur2693109/comments

    btw … has anyone ever suggested that you’re easily offended? I’m not saying that you are; I just wondered if anyone had ever suggested it is all.

  21. Carla,

    Lots of people have suggested I am easily offended. Nothing could be further from the truth. I have tried and tried to make myself clear on this issue, but it never seems that I get my point across. I’m just concerned about the growing “anti-male” sentiment in this country and what it is doing to our kids and our society at large.

    Thanks for reading. I hope you continue to look at other things I have to say.

    Matty

  22. Two things.

    1.
    I read the commercial differently than you did. I saw it as:

    Husband: We have thirty minutes till dinner, and I want you.
    Wife: Ok. I’m up for it. Since we have all this time, what will we do after sex?

    I didn’t see anything about expecting sex because he got her food. I didn’t see any insult from the wife, though it is certainly there from the writers (ie the woman looked innocent/unaware when she said it). I didn’t see her not wanting to do it, either. She seemed game.

    2.
    It still p***es me off that our media makes men seem like bumbling dolts. Yes, it IS telling about our society when it is acceptable for a woman to call her spouse stupid, fat, or lazy and have others think it’s funny or normal. It IS telling that women can go on the Dr. Phil show have their husbands called “sex addicts” for watching porn once in a while on national TV. It IS telling that women don’t understand why, after nine months of refusing their husbands sex during pregnancy, their husbands might not want them as much afterwards. Men have taken women for granted, sure. Now women are getting their own back, and it’s cruel, senseless, and – more than anything – stupid.

  23. Oh, PS – I’m a woman.

  24. you are dumb. its a commercial. lighten up.

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