Snickers Site Closes After Complaints

NEW YORK Masterfoods has shuttered a microsite featuring its 30-second “Mechanics” spot from Sunday’s Super Bowl, in response to complaints from the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation and the Human Rights Campaign, among others.

The spot, from Omnicom Group’s TBWA\Chiat\Day in New York, depicts two mechanics eating opposite ends of a Snickers bar until their lips meet and they break apart. Sheepishly, one mechanic then says he thinks they just kissed. To erase the thought, they decide to “do something manly” and each pulls a clump of hair from his chest.

The site,, featured the spot and three alternate versions as well as video of Bears and Colts players reacting to all four ads.

On Monday, after some complained that the characters’ reaction to the faux kiss was homophobic, Masterfoods closed down the site, the company said.

“We know that humor is highly subjective and understand that some people may have found the ad offensive. Clearly that was not our intent,” said a company representative, in a statement. “Consequently, we do not plan to continue to air the ad on television or on our Snickers Web site.”

The rep added that Masterfoods’ main goal was “to capture the attention of our core Snickers consumer” and that “feedback from our target consumers hasn been positive. In addition, many media and Web site commentators of this year’s Super Bowl commercial line-up ranked the commercial among this year’s top-10 best.”

The microsite address now links to the main Snickers site, whose only example of advertising is a 2006 spot featuring a thirtysomething guy singing an acoustic ballad about the chocolate bar’s ingredients.

The Hackettstown, N.J-based client originally planned to have consumers vote for their favorite version of “Mechanics” and then run the top vote getter, possibly during the Daytona 500 later in the month.

TBWA\C\D New York executive creative director Gerry Graf declined comment.