Monday, March 5, 2012

Sorry Charlie, your sheen is actually a blemish on these brands

So this is how it is in showbiz. Bad boys aren’t shunned by their peers for obnoxious, indulgent, abusive and self-destructive behavior. No. They circle the wagons. They bring the prodigal son back into the fold. They begin a careful rehabilitation of their misguided one’s image.

Hollywood never abandons its own, does it? And the advertising industry is apparently in collusion, for how coincidental is it that two ad campaigns featuring Charlie Sheen launch in close succession?

It will take a platoon of media hypes to rationalize hiring Charlie Sheen.

Why? Why? Why?

I ask DirecTV three times because I’m confident the first two explanations will be laughable. A wonderful campaign just lost some credibility and DirecTV earned itself a black eye with so many consumers, starting with women, who used to admire the brand.

Someone ought to arrest the brains behind the decision to hire Charlie Sheen

Fiat ought to be ashamed. They make Mr. “Party Boy” Sheen out to be some kind of god to be adored by women and revered by men. At the same time, Fiat seems to sneer at his recklessness figuratively and literally. Driving the car through his mansion in a furiously aggressive manner with great disregard is an apt metaphor for how he has conducted his life of late. It’s shocking.

Ad Age asks “Should Madison Avenue Be Rehabbing Charlie Sheen?”

Simple answer: No.

I ask Fiat and DirecTV: how does attaching your name to Charlie Sheen and his drug-infused and domestic violence (allegedly) bad boy image enhance your brand?

Not-so-simple answer: _______________________________________