Domino’s weird ads: A retrospective

Feces! Regurgitation! Rapping noodles! A look at the company's long and illustrious history of baffling commercials

Topics: Food Tube, Food,

Domino's weird ads: A retrospectiveYouTube screenshot

Earlier this week, Salon’s Sara Breselor interviewed Bryan Wansink about Domino’s sweetened new pizza recipe, a recipe that the company has been touting in a bizarre television ad that lists customer grievances (“Domino’s tastes like cardboard”) and soberly acknowledges that their problems are now a thing of the past. The “I sucked but now I don’t” strategy is a strange approach to pizza advertising, but, then again, Domino’s has an illustrious history of baffling (and even fecal-themed) ad campaigns. Don’t believe us? We’ve assembled some of the company’s most head-scratching ads below:

  • In 2006, Domino’s decided to sell its new line of “brownie squares” with dipping sauces by doing the following: 1. Dressing up a small person in a costume that looks like a giant turd. 2. Naming the turd “Fudgems.” 3. Having child hug Fudgems so that it comes away covered in what appears to be feces. Who wants a brownie?

  • The same year, it advertised its new line of Oreo pizzas (yes, really) with this ad showing a man and a teenager bantering about their respective chocolate mustaches. If the image of a man’s face covered in crap doing his best Bruce McCulloch impression won’t sell you on Domino’s, the awkward pedophilia vibe should do the trick.

  • The company’s ad for its Pasta Perfecta was pulled, supposedly because it includes an obscene gesture, but more likely because (surprise!) having a giant rapping noodle dressed like Flavor Flav terrify a white upper-middle-class family in their home has some rather unsavory racial implications (and, why did nobody notice that the noodle looks like a giant penis?).
    Dominos Pasta DUDE!

    DPZRAMON | MySpace Video

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  • Domino’s concise Dutch slogan — “Man hungry, ding dong, pizza” — has a kind of  caveman flair, but this bizarre Dutch regurgitation-themed ad, in which a man disgorges the delivery man who’s just dropped off his pizza, reads less like a pizza commercial and more like an early episode of the “X-Files.”

  • In a similar vein, this ad for the company’s chocolate chip cookies touts their “homebaked” taste — in the most terrifying manner possible. If you’ve ever wondered what would happen if your adorable grandmother died and came back as a villain in a cookie-themed Japanese horror movie, here’s your answer.

 

Thomas Rogers
Thomas Rogers is Salon's former Arts Editor. He has written for the Globe & Mail, the Village Voice and other publications. He can be reached at @thomasmaxrogers.

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