In a previous post I called out Iron Man 2 for its over-the-top product placement and co-branding deals with the likes of Burger King and Dr. Pepper, but now it seems another movie deserves top honors as shameless promoters of all things bad for you. As described by Brandchannel, the new superhero parody, Kick-Ass (I am sorry to have to even type that awful title) hawks no fewer than 40 brands. Here’s how some of the products break down into what’s bad for you, bad for the planet, and/or can maim you or others. PepsiCo scores the highest for most brands under one corporate umbrella (5).
Beverages – 8: Amp Energy Drink, Aquafina, Budweiser, Clover Milk (arguable), Hi-C, Mountain Dew, Sierra Mist, Welch’s
Junk food – 7: Count Chocula, Dunkin’ Donuts, Honey Puffs, Hungry Man, Land-O-Lakes, SunChips, Twizzlers
Cars – 6: Chrysler PT Cruiser, Ford, Ford Mustang, GMC, Range Rover, Rolls Royce
Guns – 4: Beretta, Glock, Heckler & Koch, Steyr (I had to look these up)
Sexually-exploitative dolls: Bratz! (OK, I made a special category for this, but they are awful.)
I suppose that unlike with Iron Man 2, these movie producers could argue that there is no disconnect with superheroes eating and drinking and shooting and driving themselves into oblivion in a parody, but I still say given how popular this movie will be with young people, it’s inexcusable. Yes, the film is rated R, but we all know how teenagers flock to R movies to feel grown up. But if these teens use many of the products promoted in the film, they may not get to.
What do you think?