Sanjeev Kotnala: Nothing wrong if the Boss cooks

13 Aug,2014

By Sanjeev Kotnala

 

Another point of view on The Innocent Simple TVC by Airtel.

 

I am happy to note that the spot is still on air. It demonstrates that the client is not spooked by criticism. And I appreciate it.

 

Media, creative expert and social science adventurers have not been able to see how progressive the TVC is. We must applaud   this progressiveness. Or the barbaric assault on creative will make many creative people chained to retro ideas.

 

This has only increased viewing of a mediocre ad. Let’s not forget that the consumer of the brand has audience beyond metro and hence the creative expression cannot be judged by metro standards alone. Truly, the giant step of wife, as a boss, could only be accepted if the man was the boss at home, equating to wife cooking at home and waiting for him.  Let creative be analyzed for its creative and strategic intent.

 

Bura Jo Dekhan Main Chala, Bura Naa Milya Koye

Jo Munn Khoja Apnaa, To Mujhse Bura Naa Koye

[I searched for the crooked man, met not a single one Then searched myself, “I” found the crooked one]

 

It is probably the first brand in India bold enough to create WIFE-AS-THE-BOSS scenario outside the home. First to demonstrate the AMBITIOUS, NO-NONSENSE HIGHLY PROFESSIONAL SIDE of woman, if she demands performance her command must be obeyed. She in her professional avatar is away from the bonds of family and social relations and so called hierarchies. Yet she is caring.

 

May be the crowd criticizing it on its myopic vision fails to appreciate. Sari in office and shorts and top at home is such a brilliant piece of costume designing.  Promoting sari as a office wear is so nationalistic and shorts and top at home show respect for the tradition and culture, but freedom in relationship. The choices being made are independent with self will and not being forced.

 

Is there anything wrong in her lovingly cooking at home, seducing him with visual delights of definitely appetizing dishes and being in touch with her husband? Would the reaction been positive if after coming home, she played with the infant kid, breastfeeding the baby and showing those pictures on smartphone to her husband. Would that not still be sticking to the stereotyped images? Many would have questioned her need to work with an infant baby. Because, they need to serve; deep-fried stale creative comments with high frequency.

 

May be the creative team did discuss the possibility of her ordering pizza at office and at home and eating in virtual togetherness created by the smartphone screens. May be they missed this insensitive highly progressive twist.  Why do we shy away and find fault at reflecting what is really happening in our society?

 

How did they miss the macho male progressive trick of senior male boss taking load from an obviously overworked junior lady and allowing her to go home? Then from home, when the clock struck 11, the junior- who is also wife-, would have shown the dinner to him and her silently requested ab toh ghar aa jao.

 

Though technically the whole premise of boss wife is weak.  Most companies do not appreciate/ allow/ employ husband wife combo and definitely not in a direct reporting structure.

 

Think most of the baiters have missed the last lines of the ad. The relentless professional boss in caring wife avatar does not take the bait by an equally emotional husband.

 

WIFE : Boss ko bol wife bula rahi hai

HUSBAND :Tuh hi bolo na boss ko

WIFE : Zaldi aana wait karoongi

 

And they miss that it is just an episode of their life. How cute and loving the real relationship between these two would be. Why negate and why not look at positives.

 

Maybe the next ad from Airtel must could make the Boss wife stay back for a meeting. Husband to comes back and cooks for her. End visual almost same with role reversed. Double stroke of breaking stereotypes and appreciation form this crowd.

 

Hopefully that will never happen. Brands do not need to always looking at creating social revolution. Nothing wrong in being sensitive caring and easily adapting to changing role requirement.

 

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