French ad panned for saying Santa isn’t real

Credit-Mutuel

Legions of French parents are petitioning the ARPP (France's resident advertising watchdog) to ban a Crédit Mutuel commercial that claims Santa Claus (or Père Noël, in the local parlance) isn't real. "I have some bad news for you," a father says to his (grown) son right at the beginning of the spot. "Père Noël doesn't really exist." Parents are all upset that their children's illusions about the world will be shattered by this uninvited revelation, since the ad aired during a broadcast of Ratatouille. One child psychologist even claims this could have the effect of a "bomb" on children. Uh, no. No, it won't. But this does raise the question of why anything about financial advice aired during a cartoon movie. Aren't ads like those usually the province of golf tournaments and old-men-yelling news commentaries?