Before this moment in history, it would not have seemed possible that anyone would ever ask you whether you thought a TV promo spot featuring a toddler with fake chest hair was in questionable taste.
But here we are. Someone pasted fake chest hair on a toddler and had him run happily along a beach for a promo for ‘The Hasselhoffs,’ A&E’s new reality series launching Dec. 5 and starring the one and only David Hasselhoff and his daughters Taylor-Ann and Hayley.
In the 30-second spot, titled “Some People Are Born Awesome,” a boy about the age of 3 is seen running down a beach, turning at least one bikini-clad beauty’s head, as the ‘Baywatch’ theme song “I’m Always Here” plays in the background.
It’s being suggested by some that the spot is in bad taste! One commenter on YouTube (among many who thought the spot was funny, at the very least) even thought the spot smacked of pedophilia. Ouch.
Well, we’d like you to be the judge and tell us what you think of it. Check it out, then read on:
Our own opinion is that the spot is part of a broader trend these days, perhaps one that started with that dancing baby seen way back when on ‘Ally McBeal.’ More recently, we’ve been seeing babies in all sorts of unbabylike situations, thanks to computer-generated animation – including those talking tots with the world-weary voices who babble about investing in E-Trade commercials. There’s also the babies rollerskating to “Rappers Delight” in the Evian water spots.
The trend is so pervasive these days that Sacha Baron Cohen savagely lampooned it in his ‘Bruno’ movie, in a scene where he interviewed parents who said they were willing to hire out their babies to appear in photos wearing Nazi uniforms and hanging on a cross.
So, beyond this particular hairy baby in the ‘Hasselhoffs’ spot, what do you think of all these companies using babies in their commercials? Is this OK? Or when it comes to selling products and TV shows, should we just leave the wee ones out of it?