Does anyone else find it just a little creepy that the long-dead Dave Thomas appears, or should we say reappears, in brand-new Wendy’s commercials?
Granted, the spots celebrate the 35th anniversary of the fast feeder, so we might be able to forgive the overly nostalgic approach. But trotting out old snapshots of the founder? That’s a bit much. Besides, is there no effective way to advertise Wendy’s without Dave?
I wonder if the average consumer realizes Dave is dead. If they do, they might find this odd, too. If not, they must be really confused (perhaps a tad panicked?), because the voiceover uses the past tense in talking about what Dave “liked” or how “he would have done it.”
Wendy’s and its agency, McCann Erickson, should move on for good. How about taking a page from the Perdue playbook and having another family member take the spokesman reins? You can have Dave’s daughter (isn’t her name Wendy?), niece, nephew, cousin or uncle appear in the spots, and they
can say wonderful things about the business Dave built.
Almost anything would be better than trudging through the Thomas family photo album.
—Posted by Alison Fahey