Sunday, May 06, 2007

New Netflix Ad Gives Me Nightmares

Although I'm really not a fan of Netflix, I have always found their quirky ads, where movie characters represent different movies, to be at least mildly endearing:

(From Youtube user thomastate)

However, I was browsing the New York Times today, reading an article about the anti-war movement, when something leapt out at my screen and totally confused me with a mix of disgust and terror: a new Netflix ad.
To people who know the Netflix commercials, it appears to be a couple of the undead, representing a zombie movie and waiting inside your monitor to welcome you home. However, to an untrained eye, it looks like an old couple, complete with cantankerous old man and sweet old woman(?). Also, they both appear to be in a frighteningly advanced state of decomposition.
I guess the big question is: Have Netflix commercials become so ubiquitous that people will know exactly what this pic represents? Or will they just be grossed out by it?

Better yet, what do you guys think of it? Does this ad make you want to rent movies from Netflix?

[Update 1: Sighted again at CNN today:

Next to the ruined city, this whole image gives me a really creepy "Dawn of the Dead" feel...]

[Update 2: I put in a cleaner image of the ad. Also, thanks to HackingNetflix for linking here. Great comment by Meg on the msg boards.]


Marc Savoy said...

....totally confused me with a mix of disgust and terror: a new Netflix ad..
I completely agree. WTF? is my first reaction to this ad. It's bewildering, bizarre, a definite turn-off. Why they've featured this zombie couple is beyond me.

Anonymous said...

I completely disagree. Big freaking deal.

Snoob said...

"Have Netflix commercials become so ubiquitous that people will know exactly what this pic represents?"

Well, I've never, personally, seen a zombie or the undead outside of a movie, so yeah. It works for me.

Maybe the HUGE NETFLIX title right next to it, though. Perhaps that's another "dead" giveaway? XD

Anonymous said...

got here by googling: netflix ad old couple

i've seen that ad repeatedly for a while now. had no idea about the backstory whatsoever, just looked lie a disgusting looking old couple to me. so i decided to try to find out why netflix keeps putting this disgusting iage in my face, so here i am.

Anonymous said...

This disgusting picture is now showing up as an ad in my hotmail inbox. Every time I check my e-mail I have this gross undead couple with their brown teeth and rotting flesh leering at me.

What marketing genius came up with this idea?? Get a clue Netflix!

Anonymous said...

I too am disgusted by the ad. Every time I visit a site displaying this ad I have a hard time reading the content. I came to this site to vent after just seeing it again :(

Anonymous said...

This ad is disgusting. It reminds me of the stupid Quizno's rodents and is a complete turn-off. Doesn't anyone in that advertising firm have any sense?

Anonymous said...

I was fed up and I actually did a Google search ("netflix ad") after seeing this disgusting banner ad on the NY Times website again.

Your blog came up. And that's how I found out wtf was going on with that ad.

Netflix are fooling themselves by assuming people know who those people are in that ad.


Anonymous said...

Indeed, Netflex Ad in the
New York Times gives me the
C R E E P S !!

Whose idea is this?

With so many people writing 'duh'
about it, when will I open NY Times
and not have to see this ad!

Seattle, Washington

sue said...

I *detest* that ad! I knew it was an ad for Netflix, but that didn't make it any less revolting. I try to get the damn thing off my screen by moving the window whenever it comes on, and sometimes I just close the window entirely, even if there's something there I would have read otherwise. I've been wondering about whether other people felt the same way--got here by googling "gross netflix advertisement."

Anonymous said...

Hate the ad, it's stupid and doesn't make me want to use Netflix. I'm not offended by it but they shouldn't put it on professional websites like Yahoo News or CNN especially when they don't know who is on sites like those. Very sensitive people might come across it and be revolted by it. Typed in "netflix zombie ad" and got here fyi.

Anonymous said...

They just look like a couple of crusty old Brits who had a bit too many pints.

Bella Rossa said...

I have blogged about this very same thing. I think that ad with the decomposing old men is really disgusting and creepy.

Clearly, the image is so repulsive, your immediate instinct is to look away, and therefore be forced to look at the rest of the ad.

Why don't you put a picture of maggot-covered gangrene in an ad, Netflix?

Anonymous said...

This is by far the worst ad ever! Don't they realize people like to look at nice things, like cute women with perky boobs? I honestly hate Netflix just because of this ad.

At least they didn't have a picture of an aborted fetus, a pile of dog crap, vomit, or a used tampon.

Anonymous said...

the old actor in the zombie commercial is Cass Cumerford the star of FAT PIZZA. He is AUSTRALIA'S GREATEST ex-hippie who no longer smokes cigarettes.

Lydia said...

Wow -- glad to see other people in the world are completely confused and grossed out by this ad. I thought I was really missing something-- like there was some humor in the ad that I didn't know about. I guess I need to get on the Zombie Train to fully appreciate Netflix's genius. Got here by Googling "netflix ad old people" to see what the heck was going on.

Anonymous said...

this ad blows my mind---it made me hire netflix vids---maybe now I've become a zombie for Netflix---I heard the zombie is Cass Cumerford , aussie co-star of "Praise"""

Anonymous said...

"no idea", "totally confused". Really? If you'd like to understand why Netflix is running this ad perhaps you should look up Halloween. I think that may help your confusion.