Snickers pulls plug on Super Bowl smooch ad
Masterfoods kills ad that showed two men 'kissing' after objections by gay rights groups.
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- After a number of groups objected, Masterfoods USA, the maker of Snickers candy bars, has pulled the plug on a controversial Super Bowl commercial that showed two men accidentally kissing.
The 30-second commercial featured two mechanics who end up sharing both a Snickers bar and an inadvertent kiss, and then react by pulling out a clump of chest hair to "do something manly."
On its Web site, the candy maker posted three alternate endings to the commercial and reactions from NFL players.
Groups such as the Human Right Campaign and the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) condemned the ad, saying it promoted anti-gay prejudice and condoned violence against gay Americans.
"That Snickers, Mars and the NFL would promote and endorse this kind of prejudice is simply inexcusable," GLAAD President Neil Giuliano said in a statement.
Masterfoods USA is a subsidiary of closely held Mars Inc.
Viewers were supposed to be able to go to www.SnickersSatisfies.com or www.afterthekiss.com Web sites to view the alternate endings and vote on their favorite which would air later this month. Visitors to the site are now redirected to the Snickers' home page.
Masterfoods, which has discontinued the ad campaign, said the intent of the ad was not to offend, and noted that feedback from its target audience had been positive.
"We know that humor is highly subjective and understand that some people may have found the ad offensive. Clearly that was not our intent," Masterfoods said in a statement. "As with all of our Snickers advertising, our goal was to capture the attention of our core Snickers consumer."
The ad, which was produced by TBWA/Chiat/Day New York, is the first time since 2001 that a Snickers spot was featured in the Super Bowl.