Saturday, March 13, 2021

White Horse Whisky ad: a proof that times have changed.


Hope is the greatest gift God has bestowed on man - for without it life would be dry, cold, with little pleasure or attraction in it, and the Mutanabi was correct saying in his poem - 

How difficult is living without the space of hope

But man is known to have difficult times and challenging moments whereby he feels sad and alone and feels hopeless and how hard it is to lose hope

For such times there is nothing like a glass of

White Horse Whisky

The tasty whiskey that is good for health"

There - if anyone says Arab nations have not gone through cultural and religious shifts, the exhibit above, from a White Horse Whisky is enough to tell you they did. The ad dates back to the 40s of the last century and again, perhaps, I am overdrawing conclusions but one cannot but feel how such an ad would not be permissible today. As a matter of fact, I was seeing ads from Saudi Arabia dating back to the mid-80s and was astonished as to what was allowed then. Women without hijab on television, women being shot walking full-bodied and showing faces, objects moving on their own and aliens in a Gulf Oil ad (by aliens I do mean outer space visitors not foreign nationals).

For a comparison let me tell you this story. I will try to be vague about the details out of respect. Anyhow the automotive company was launching a sporty car which was a variant of one of their best selling models. I came up with "rou7 el horriya" as a slogan (the spirit of freedom). When the client came and we did the presentation his face turned crimson from anger which contrasted heavily with his white dress. We knew there was a huge problem. He composed himself, tried to take a breath and said: "this is an inanimate object, it does not have a spirit. And in this country, we do not include freedom in the titles of the ad".

There you go.... Times do change.