Although the societal merits of gambling casinos have been much debated, there can be no denying that Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun have perpetrated a great evil againt New England. Our sports channels have been inundated with several unsettling television commercials promoting the respective establishments. Being a blackjack aficionado, The Hangover has nothing against the casinos themselves. However, steps must be taken to end their advertisements.
Foxwoods has been using television for years, most commercials starring a Sinatra wanna-be who wouldn’t have cut it as an extra in Swingers. But things changed last year when the casino unveiled an unimaginative music video in which a comfortable suburban couple pulls up at the casino, steps out of their Old Navy outfits, and then springs to life in stylish evening wear. They wine, dine, gamble, and then–dance. That’s when the trouble starts. One’s eyes are punished by the worst exhibition of dancing this side of a Junior High Spring Formal at an all-boys Catholic school. The brunette, red dress-wearing soccer mom (the female lead) lacks rhythm, coordination, and grace. The Hangover can’t even come up with a term to describe her un-sexiness. It’s a miracle that the shot following the dancing scene doesn’t have the male lead at the bar with a double scotch, asking himself, “How did I get here?”
The ad must have proved fruitful, however, because Mohegan Sun (Foxwood’s rival) has countered. Mohegan ups the ante with an all-out musical production number. Remarkably, the soccer mom lead in Mohegan’s spot looks remarkably like the inept dancer employed by Foxwoods. I can picture the Mohegan marketing genius telling the producer: “Find us a brunette who can’t dance and lacks charisma. And goddamn it, make sure she’s got a feathered ’80’s haircut, too.” The dancing is equally as bad as the Foxwoods video, relative to its genre. The piece is reminiscent of a Drew Carey Show opening number–provided that the actors and dancers had spent the previous year drinking Buzz beer, killing all rhythm-influencing brain cells.
The Hangover doesn’t think it is too much to ask to watch a Celtics or Red Sox game without being subjected to marketing infinitely more disturbing than the gambling it’s designed to promote. Sure, it’s easy to think of clicking away, but one can’t underestimate the “car wreck” quality here. And if you doubt that the ads are that grisly, consider this: They can’t even be found on Youtube or the casinos’ websites. Yes, they are that bad. Please make them stop.