Dharma-Burger! Cadbury’s dancing monks

In covering the new ad from the candy-maker Cadbury, AdWeek writes: “Injecting goofball shenanigans into a quasi-mystical setting yields an East-West disconnect that’s ultimately so crass and vapid, it’s painful to watch.” That’ll surely seem about right to some people. What do you say?


  1. avatar
    ajollynerd Says:
    May 18th, 2011 at 10:44 am

    Ignoring how truly dumb this ad is, did anyone notice that this alleged helium balloon *dropped* on the little monk’s head at the beginning of the ad?

    Let me repeat that, in case you missed it: the “helium” baloon *dropped* on the little monk’s head.

    Would it kill advertisers to have the tiniest grasp of physics?

  2. avatar comment-top

    Even taking the monks out of the equation, this is just a terrible ad. I don’t really get the point it was trying to get across and I don’t see how it relates to a chocolate bar..

  3. avatar comment-top

    When it is time to dance, then dance.

  4. avatar comment-top

    Not offensive, just stupid.

  5. avatar comment-top

    For someone researching and practicing Chinese Buddhism, it’s interesting that they chose to make them Chinese monks and not, say, Tibetan. (Yes, yes, Tibet “is” China) Will Chinese Buddhism start to become en vogue now…?

  6. avatar
    Barbara Jellars Says:
    June 3rd, 2011 at 11:22 am

    What is the name of the song used in the ad and who sings it

  7. avatar
    David Bingell Says:
    June 3rd, 2011 at 10:22 pm

    When we cannot laugh, we will not cry.

  8. avatar comment-top

    There is a time to dance.
    This is not it.

  9. avatar comment-top

    This is comment submitted to Cadbury (Kraft Food)

    I take offence to this commercial for these reasons:
    If your product contains bovine, an animal by-product, then your commercial becomes offensive to the vegan, and other religious foundations and especially when your backdrop is a Buddhist setting. Buddhist monks are vegans.
    In the real world, monks adhere to a strict, sacred code of conduct which has endured millennia. Do you believe that Cadbury is the product that has the right to exterminate this age-old, honoured tradition with their high moral values and replace this with cheap, trashy, sexually-suggestive song and dance?
    Research your subject of advertising first, as this has deeply offended me, all because Cadbury will go to any length to turn a quick buck – even blasphemy
    Cadbury’s Reply
    Thank you for your comments
    In response to your concerns we would like to clarify that Cadbury by no means intended to cause any offense with our latest TV commercial. Quite the opposite, the premise of the ad is to bring a moment of joy as can be seen from the reactions of the cast. Instead of telling consumers that eating Cadbury Dairy Milk will give them a moment of Joy, campaigns have been developed over the past few years to share a moment of joy with them.
    This particular ad delivers this by showing the Joy that comes from breaking free from one’s daily routine and then multiplied through everyone joining in.
    Cadbury would never knowingly produce work that we believed would offend consumers. We did a considerable amount of research during the creative and production process to ensure this.
    We would like to confirm that the script was shown to:
    1.Ken Holmes – Buddhist Grand Master in EU: ‘I don’t think any Buddhist master would find it offensive’
    2.Helen Terreblance, – Buddhist community representative of SA: ‘I don’t see a problem with it, as it’s about joy.’
    Other religious groups were also consulted:
    1.Father Chris Townsend – Southern African Catholic Bishops Conference: “falling about laughing is sometimes the best thing we need’”
    The advert was also researched with a variety of consumers from different backgrounds and religious followings and we also looked at other work produced around the world in similar settings to see if it had offended consumers. We were very careful not to mock or belittle anyone in the TVC. We also felt that we had consulted widely and the campaign was true to the brands positioning of making consumers feel Joy.
    Kraft Foods takes all consumer complaints seriously and we would like to thank you for your feedback.
    My Response .
    If you take your customer’s complaints seriously and don’t intend to offend, then a fitting solution would be to have this commercial removed immediately. If you can manage a public apology, this will really be appreciated. Alternatively, Cadbury can continue to air this commercial and solicit market awareness through controversy, disrespect and insensitivity.
    Cadbury has also, not clarified the use of animal by-products in its products. Further, Kraft Foods have not indicated a way forward.
    A viewer interprets what is seen on TV at face value. The producer’s intensions are visual. No supplementary notes are required to quantify the producers intended intension. All I see is a circus of monks swapping their sacred essence of being for your moment of joy, a moment of meaningless dance to lurid lyrics (if the song is known). What a moment of joy this is. I do not need an academic qualification to justify what I view. This comes purely from the heart.
    Should Cadbury treat this concern as trivial, then may I kindly suggest other genre that can equally share this moment of joy and generate the desired revenue.

    A gay Jesus shares his moment of joy when he comes out of the closet.
    The pope and his cardinals can strip to the beat of Joe Cocker’s, “You can leave your hat on”, at Charismas Mass sharing their moment of joy. Wink, wink, nudge, nudge.
    The German soldiers at Auschwitz have their moment of joy afters a day’s work.
    Millions of Muslim pilgrims in prayer stop for your moment of joy.

  10. avatar comment-top

    wow, that’s quite a lot of back-and-forth. thanks for sharing it.

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    personally I find it disrespectful. I am a buddhist and I take offence to trivialising a faith, and the seriousness of that faith. besides which, it doesnt make much sense. I think it should be removed.


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