May 27, 2009

Native dancer in Gatorade commercial

Correspondent Mark Anquoe brought this video to my attention:

This is a nicely done, seemingly sensitive commercial. But it raises a few questions:

  • Did the Native performers agree to participate in this ad? Did they agree to (implicitly) endorse Gatorade?

  • Would the Native performers agree that the dance is about "action" and "rhythm"? And not about honoring their traditions, the Earth, or the Creator?

  • At the end the ad says, "We salute you." Gatorade is manufactured by the Quaker Oats Company, a division of PepsiCo. So Pepsi is saluting Native performers.

  • Does this "salute" extend to anything beyond the commercial? Has Pepsi done anything for Native communities other than sell them sugar drinks that contribute to their obesity problem? Unless Pepsi is doing something concrete, this salute is as meaningless as the various apologies have been.


    Anonymous said...

    Well, it does say "honor their elders" through rhythm.

    But it's a stupid ad. For one thing, anyone named Red Bull should be endorsing the eponymous drink for name recognition (as horrible as it tastes).

    gaZelbe said...

    Actually Red Bull is a pretty well known drum group. That there is a commercial beverage with the same name is incidental.

    I don't think its a stupid ad, but the questions are thought provoking...

    Anonymous said...

    I feel that the add was done in very good taste. I also think that it shows Native American dancing of any type is phsyically demanding. With contest pow-wows around these days some dancers do suppliment their lives financially by staying in shape and dancing in contest's pow-wows, plus, keeping traditions alive and intact.

    Great add if it they give it some primetime spots on television it could do some real positive things for us Native's.

    By the way, Red Bull, I have to agree is a great drum group out of Canada. But they should have used Midnite Express Singer's from Mlps. Mn. In my opinion....