Remember last year when a simple commercial for a popular circle-shaped breakfast cereal turned into a headline news story? I’m talking about the infamous Cheerios ad that featured an adorable multiracial family and incited a flurry of racist comments, anger, and controversy.
Here’s the awesome part: General Mills the maker of Cheerios isn’t scared of the controversy. They’re embracing this family as part of their brand with a brand new sequel featuring once again the adorable mixed-race Gracie with her white mother and black father. The commercial will debut during the Super Bowl, marking the first time a Cheerios ad will air during one of the most watched television events of the year.
The new ad, created by Saatchi & Saatchi, uses the Cheerios circles as a representation of some big news for the family. (Spoiler alert: It’s sweet, tender, and something that has everything to do with family and nothing to do with the color of the family’s skin.) We should applaud the creators of the ad for making the reality of an interracial family a non-topic, it’s about them, nothing else (well, besides Cheerios of course). As Camille Gibson, the vice president of marketing at Cheerios, said about the initial controversy, “At Cheerios, we know there are many kinds of families, and we celebrate them all.”
I’m not the only one completely impressed by how Cheerios tackled their return of the family. Ad Week wrote:
“It’s hard to imagine Cheerios handling a sequel any more deftly than this. It obliquely references the earlier controversy, but by embracing a simpler story that has nothing to do with it, it suggests the controversy was dumb to begin with—that this is just America now, and families like this are just like everyone else, with better things to worry about.”
The news of this ad comes fresh on the heels of the debut of the first gay couple on a Disney show, another breakthrough moment for media. This just shows that – hopefully – mainstream America is finally ready to embrace all sorts of families no matter the color of their skin or their sexual orientation. Woo-hoo! Let’s hear it for progress!
Do you think that the Cheerios ads are controversial or just a view of an American family?