An advert for the carbonated soft drink Orangina is the subject of a scandal in the United Kingdom, after it was broadcasted only once on E4, a digital television channel, beginning of August. It is an animation and it lasts 60 long seconds. Oddly enough, the same advert, created by a french advertising agency, has been broadcasted since 2007 on French channels without any problem. What’s the deal then?
It appears that the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) has received 147 complaints on the day the advert was screened on E4, during the channel’s popular programme “How to Look Good Naked” (not really a programme for children if I may say…), from viewers and from children’s charities and equal rights groups.
Claude Knights, director of Kidscape, told the British newspaper The Telegraph that “Orangina is a drink which is mainly aimed at children and young people, but this new advert places the product in a very sexualised and provocative context. The almost sinister portrayal of animals in an animation style filled with sexual innuendo leads to very mixed and confused messages”.
Right. So, what can we see on this advert? The action takes place in the jungle and is based on an unlikely love story between a doe and a bear, both quite undressed (well… nothing really disgusting since animals are generally naked in real life, aren’t they?). After some endless dances and choreography with giraffes, pandas, rabbits and other animals pole dancing, all drinking the soft drink on Salsa music, the advert ends with Orangina bottles exploding between the thighs of happy looking zebras, which we must admit (with a smile) is a little bit limit…
Dr Pepper Snapple Group, owner of Orangina since 2000, did not comment.
As for the Advertising Standards Authority, Matthew Wilson, Press Officer, has yesterday confirmed to me by email, “that the ASA has considered all the complaints it has received about the Orangina advertisement and has decided that it will not be launching a formal investigation. Given the post-9pm restriction on TV that the ad has been given (the ASA) does not believe that the ad is in breach of (its) codes. The ad is therefore allowed to continue to be broadcast”. [original email from the ASA]
Therefore, and contrary to what media in France recently said, this advert has not been banned in the United Kingdom and never will.
Now, please make your own opinion and watch the following clip: