Monday, October 29, 2012
I don’t often share ads on my blog, and when I do it’s to comment on something within it or about it. This time is no different.
The ad above is for Westpac New Zealand, one of New Zealand’s big banks (it’s owned by Westpac Australia). The ad is part of a campaign to get people to start talking about money and their financial needs: “Why can we ask the big questions in life, but not the ones about our money?”
All of which is pretty standard fare for a bank ad—except for 0:27 to 0:34 which depicts a same-gender marriage. This is extraordinary because it’s the first time I’m aware of that an ad for New Zealand has depicted the realities of LGBT life, and not used us as props, stereotypes or as punchlines to jokes.
The heads of radical right religious political activists will explode when they see the ad, and not just because it dares to have a matter-of-fact portrayal of GLBT lives as they really are, but also for what it symbolises: The marriage equality debate is over in New Zealand. No company would take a risk depicting something that most people found “distasteful” or that they opposed; this depiction shows that big business in New Zealand has already moved on from this issue, even if the political process is lagging a bit behind.
I hope that we’ll see more such realistic portrayals in New Zealand ads in the future. This is a good start.