As children and their families prepared for Thanksgiving watching “The Cat in the Hat” on television, the last thing they would have expected to hear was a TV announcer literally saying, “No bull—-!”
A Black Friday ad for Jetson, a South Florida appliance and electronics retailer that bills itself as a family-friendly, veteran-owned company, stated the following:
What you won’t find at Jetson this Black Friday: 52″ inflatable lawn decorations.
What you will find: 52″ Sony W-Series with free Blu-ray players for $1,499
Black Friday only at Jetson: No Bull—-!
The following is a recording of the ad as it aired on TBS during the popular children’s live-action film, “The Cat in the Hat” (warning: content may offend some viewers):
WND observed the ad running during numerous commercial breaks on various cable networks for several days. It also aired during holiday movies and specials broadcast on the Hallmark Channel.
Brian, a South Florida resident and Jetson customer, told WND he was taken aback when he saw the ad on Nov. 21.
“I called the manager at the local Jetson store and asked him to tell his regional manager that I think it’s totally inappropriate,” Brian said. “‘I said, ‘It doesn’t represent your company well. You’re a family-run company, and you should have better judgment.’”
Brian said the manager agreed and told him he would relay his concerns to the corporate office.
But he said the ad aired several more times in the days leading up to Black Friday, and his 5-year-old daughter observed the commercial during children’s programming.
“It was shocking to be watching a children’s show, and suddenly there it was,” he said. “I just couldn’t believe it.”
Another South Florida resident who saw the ad said, “The most bothersome thing was that the ad was ubiquitous. It was everywhere and it couldn’t be escaped by flipping to another cable channel. To actually hear the word ‘bullsh-t’ on TV with only a fraction of a syllable censored was quite disturbing.”
WND contacted Jetson’s corporate headquarters and asked why the expletive was included in its commercial.
“I was not happy about it,” Betty Flynn, advertising spokeswoman at Jetson Corporate, told WND. “It was supposed to air very late in the evening so it would be watched by a more mature audience. We had the ad pulled just as soon as we could get a hold of Comcast on Monday morning.”
She claimed the ad was pulled before Thanksgiving, despite viewer reports to the contrary. Flynn said the company received between six and eight complaints. She said the original commercial was supposed to say “No bull!” and air after 10 p.m. on select channels.
“I saw it on HGTV, and I think that’s one of the channels it should have been aired on,” she said. “We take full responsibility because it was our ad and our responsibility to make sure it was the way it should have been. We’ve learned a very good lesson. You know, you listen to ad agencies and at some point in time you’ve got to err on the side of being more careful and not offending families.”
WND also contacted Comcast Spotlight, the cable network that aired the clip in South Florida, to ask why the company allowed the ad in its commercial lineup.
“It was an unapproved spot,” said Ian Dennett, Comcast Spotlight area vice president. “We had a technical glitch, and it got on the air. It’s been pulled.”
However, he said the “edited version” is still running. WND located the following recordings of edited versions:
Dennett said Comcast Spotlight has not received any complaints.
“For them to say this was a glitch is, in the immortal, offensive words of Jetson, a load of bull—-,” said one viewer. “They’re lying to you.”
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