Friday, 6 May 2016
JetBlue Wants Little Babies To Cry Before It Will Lower Its Prices
I’ve been being far too positive and nice about ads lately. Must be my kind and generous personality shining through.
(I am actually a decent person, honest.)
So here’s a terrible one, “FlyBabies” by MullenLowe for JetBlue in the US.
Here, we see mothers and their babies board a flight. But, this is no ordinary flight! It's a special flight where any time a baby cries, JetBlue will take 25% off everyone's next flight. Isn't that lovely?
The first issue, which I admit is at least partly to do with the US style of advertising, is the mawkish, over-egged drama of the whole thing. Nervous mothers, people staring, and obviously planted, scripted dialogue undermining any sense of genuine emotion. It feels inherently fake and forced.
But my main beef with this film is that there’s no value to it. It was a stunt. A one-off. JetBlue don’t actually give a discount to people when babies cry on their flights.
(Which is fair enough. That would be a really stupid idea.)
It's an event, created to be filmed. What then is the point to anyone else? I can't imagine why we're supposed to be impressed with the kindness of a single event. If you're going to lecture us on a moral about being nicer to parents, you've got to make more of an effort than this.
I mean, it’s nice that a handful of people got free flights.
(It’s nice for them, anyway.)
No one else gets anything out of it though. What we get is a wee story about how great JetBlue are, because they once did a cool thing for a few people on one flight.
And then there’s this, from Elle:
‘For now, a spokesperson for JetBlue says the airline has no immediate plans to repeat the stunt. But, she added, "you never know what JetBlue has up their sleeves!"’
Which is basically the PR equivalent for “don’t look behind the curtain!”
I’m not saying this to be a Scrooge or to hate on kids. Quite the opposite. If anything it’s perverse that JetBlue are celebrating and rewarding and revelling in a child’s tears.
That’s literally what they’re doing, when you come down to it. Linking financial gain with upsetting children. You're practically putting an incentive on people to make their kids cry. This isn't supposed to be Oliver Twist for heaven's sake.
(Although the choreography is almost as obvious.)
This is one of the dumbest, most meritless ads I think I’ve ever seen. JetBlue and MullenLowe, I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.