Bil Browning

Budweiser's New Gay Commercial?

Filed By Bil Browning | April 26, 2011 9:30 AM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment
Tags: Budweiser, Don't Ask Don't Tell, gay soldiers, gays in the military, soldier coming home

Our friend Michael Jensen has a post up at AfterElton that points out this new beer commercial and asks "Does This Budweiser Military Ad Have a Gay Vibe?" Uh, definitely ambiguously yeah! Advertising companies know that different audiences will see their own stories in a good ad and this one definitely qualifies as "open to interpretation."

So the first person our soldier calls is this other guy. Let's call him PB for Potential Boyfriend. Clearly the solider isn't married or in a serious relationship with the girl we later see him hugging. Otherwise he surely would've called her first. So the possibilities are that either that PB is a best friend or ... a boyfriend. Hmm, would a soldier coming home really call his best friend before his parents?

...PB sure seems to be much of the focus of the commercial as he prepares for the party. And then who is the first person to greet and hug our soldier? It's PB of course. And it's a fairly intense hug.

What do you think? Michael's readers seem to be rather divided, so I'll be interested to see what y'all think.

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Yep -- it's open to interpretation. How about "big brother, little sister" instead of "boyfriend, beard"? It's probably his mom who's third in line for hugs.

The whole point of leaving it that wide open is that there is no right answer. As you note, people will see what they want to see.

For some reason, I interpreted this as a soldier calling his brother, but I'm not sure why. I think it's because I've seen a few actual videos of soldiers returning home and one I particularly remember is of a soldier waking his sleeping brother up.

Still...I like the same-sex couple ambiguity as much as I like the best friend possibility.

Best friend seems to make less sense because the soldier would clearly return home first instead of going to a friend's house and calling his friend first. The PB clearly lives with him, otherwise he wouldn't have access to the house/barn...


Damn, I missed the "running over to people's houses and calling his parents" part when I first saw it.

Still, it's cute.

I'm going to hop on the brother bus, but I would be willing to say that Budweiser didn't make that more clear for a reason.

I agree that it's vague on purpose.. they can use this one ad for so many different reasons. Friend/brother/boyfriend.... Kind of like how so many family ads now are of vaguely hispanic families.. two versions of each ad with same actors. one in english and one in spanish

Straight people will see what they want to see... but I think they're doing it!

I remember my brother coming home from VietNam, that's not how brothers look at each other and hug. that was hot!

Awww, I saw this ad during the Celtics/Knicks game the other night. I started crying, but thought it was because the returning soldier wasn't met when he got off the bus. Now I see that I was crying because the soldier's boyfriend had put together a fab and wonderful homecoming party! Who else but a BF would do what he did? And, BF was the soldier's first hug: big, hard, so glad you're still live kinda hug. Awww, I love it! I might even choke down one Bud, just to say thanks to Anheuser Busch...LOL. Celtics won, BTW, sweeping the Knickerbockers, whose star Stodemire was lookin' awfully gay in his big geeky glasses and perfectly fitting suit in a post-game interview. Ahem.

This commercial isn't even remotely gay -- accidental or otherwise. Come on, quit trying to interpret everything to fit into a little sparkling pink bejeweled box. They were trying to make it feel all warm and fuzzy, but that's it. Anyone with any small sense of gaydar can also see that neither guy was one of ours. Quit the wishful thinking.