As you may have seen on Twitter yesterday, Burger King was either sold to McDonald’s or taken over by crazy people. Both would be an improvement, as Burger King has a reputation as “the fast food that even fast-food lovers don’t like at all.” There has always been something off about this hamburger franchise business, especially the marketing. That’s why cynical people looked at the supposed hacking of @BurgerKing and figured it was just another desperate try to get anyone to care about the perennial No. 2 hamburger brand.
Having utterly failed to accidentally make a creepy red-and-yellow male harlequin like Ronald McDonald, Burger King’s vulture capital owners in the 2000s created an intentionally disturbing human mascot called “The King.” People with tattoos on their necks were apparently won over by this thing, until the Great Recession made all these people unemployed. When Burger King was sold yet again, in 2010, the new owners (an investment group in Brazil) killed “The King” and fired the advertising agency that created this abomination.
A typically crappy Burger King ad, this one made poor use of a then-popular African-American singer, who would explain to the white people what was involved in making a repulsive concoction of breaded chicken waste, corn syrup sauces and a tortilla of some kind. And all the marketing money was wasted, as the commercial was pulled after complaints of “black people and fried chicken” racism.
The company’s advertisements are also horrible in England.
What cut-rate animation studio made this piece of horse shit?
“Sir Shake-a-lot,” from the days when it was still “okay” to mock those struggling with Parkinson’s Disease. This was reportedly Rush Limbaugh’s favorite commercial.
This one from 1978 featured yet another flop character, the “Duke of Doubt,” who now presides over a misogyny-based online skeptic forum.
This rare footage from Studio 54 involved the consumption of more than 7 kilograms of cocaine.
That this commercial aired within months of the “Duke of Doubt” spots is nothing less than a corporate cry for help.
In an era of vaguely hippie/integrated singers doing corporate themes for the Now People—Coca-Cola’s “I’d Like To Teach the World To Sing” set the template in 1971—Burger King’s agency contributed the bizarre “Have It Your Way” campaign. It was catchy, so it was used to death, and by the late 1970s was better known for the Saturday Night Live parody commercial than the actual spots featuring blow-dried leisure-suited dads and moms bewildered by a new way of life: your inedible assburger could also be purchased without the pickles!