10 of the most controversial ads in the last years

Some agencies seek to make controversial ads to get attention. Sometimes this strategy succeeds, other times it doesn’t. It also depends on the client if he is willing to take risks.
The biggest problem arises when neither the client nor the agency wants a controversial advertisement and yet it comes to the public’s attention.

The necessary excuses solve the PR crisis due to a controversial ad, the withdrawal of the advertisement, and a long time necessary to forget.

We chose ten of the most publicized controversial ads in the last ten years.

Bud Light and Nike – The controversial adverts of transgender social media influencer Dylan Mulvaney for Nike and Bud Light.

Dylan Mulvaney ads for  Bud Light and Nike.mp4

TurboTax Coffee Spit 

Not the first time on the list.

TurboTax Coffee Spit Take Hilarious Commercial.mp4

Tesco – This Christmas, Nothing’s Stopping Us (2021)
Add a Santa Claus with a green pass at the end of the advert…


Meat & Livestock: Lamb. The Meat More People Can Eat
Add religion in advertisement and it provoked a storm of protest from all over the world.

Lamb. The Meat More People Can Eat - You Never Lamb Alone.

McDonald’s: Dead Dad
The company was accused of exploiting the feelings of children who have lost a parent. One of the most controversial adverts in the UK.

McDonald's Dead Dad Advert - Commercial [90 seconds, unedited]

Gillette: The Best Men Can Be
The Gillette advert has received intense criticism on social media, a lot of people calling for a boycott of the brand, complaining that the ad is ‘insulting’ and ‘emasculates men’.

We Believe The Best Men Can Be  Gillette (Short Film)[HD,1280x720, Mp4]

FirstBank: Puppy Sale
FirstBank adds a disclaimer to whom it may concern for its puppy sale commercial.

FirstBank - Puppy Sale - 60 [HD]

SAS Scandinavian Airlines – What is truly Scandinavian?
In this advert, there are several Scandinavian stereotypes challenged like democracy (invented in Greece), rye bread (imported from Turkey), open sandwiches (take from the Netherlands), Danish pastries (get from Austria), licorice (imported from China), windmills (invented in Persia), and both cycling (barrow from Germany).

SAS - What is truly Scandinavian

Taco Bell: Belluminati
The advert talk about a conspiracy named … “The Belluminati”

Belluminati - $1 Stacker _ Commercial _ Taco Bell [720p]

GoDaddy: Journey Home
This controversial commercial maybe is funny as a dark comedy but some people took it as an insult.


Carnival: Come Back to the Sea
People were not happy that the ad says we come from the sea

Carnival Corporation - Come Back To The Sea - Super Bowl XLIX Commercial

TurboTax: Boston Tea Party
The ad mocking the American Revolution

Turbo Tax 'Boston Tea Party'

Liquid Death: Demon Infused Liquid Death – Halloween
They use a real witch to trap real demons inside their cans of water.

Demon Infused Liquid Death

Toys R Us Spain (2021)
A lot of people have been bothered by this ad which, in their opinion, sedates the guilt of parents who do not spend time with their children.

Christmas advert toy R us controversial.mp4

Related TV Commercials

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