Old Spice And Sad Moms

This Old Spice commercial is getting a lot of play – two million hits and counting on YouTube, free advertising for an ad that I’m guessing will play during the Super Bowl.

The media is putting people into two camps: those who find it funny, and those who find it creepy.

I’m in a third camp: I find it sad.

The moms are sad. They look sad, their clothes are sad, their hair is sad. The song they sing is, of course, sad. And the message is devastatingly sad: don’t grow up.

I saw one of the creators of the commercial on TV this morning. He said, “No mom wants to see her boy turn in to a man.”


Smart, confident moms want to see their children – boys and girls – grow up and go off into the world. We’re not afraid of that stage, because we never stopped having our own lives, in addition to being mothers. Life for us will not end with an empty nest, it will grow.

I’m excited to see what’s next for my kids. Sure, I get wistful sometimes. Just a couple weeks ago I was thinking about how sad it will be when my kids are no longer waking me up at 6am on Christmas morning. But I will gladly give up that morning in exchange for my kids getting to experience that feeling with their own children.

I know it’s only a commercial. I don’t want to take it too seriously. But I don’t find it funny, and apparently I’m the target audience. If one mom in a commercial is portrayed as being a sweat-pants wearing, make-up-less sad sack I can look past it – we all have those days. But a whole group of them? That’s not us, not the moms I know.

The moms I know are enjoying their kids now while being excited for their futures. You won’t catch us stalking our kids on dates – we’ll be on our own!


  1. says

    I think you’re right, fwiw. Not being a mom myself I just thought it was weird, watching sad women get regurgitated out if furniture. Honestly it didn’t make a ton of sense at first. Now I get it but I’m left unenthusiastic.

    Why are you the demographic for this, anyhow? I mean, I think you are, but why? Old Spice is trying to get moms to buy cologne for their sons? This is a big market?

    I loved the Old Spice Guy commercials to the point of distraction. But this one seemed just weird.

    • says

      @Toni: I’m not even sure if that’s their hope. What the creator said on TV makes me think that I’m the demographic, but the commercial says the opposite (“Hey sad moms, buy this product and it will do the opposite of what you want to happen!”). But I don’t think the teens are the target either. I think in the end they just knew it would get a ton of free play, with their name attached to it. No publicity is bad publicity, etc.

  2. Sunny says

    I find this add not only sad but belittling to the strength purpose and beauty of women and motherhood in general. It is an add that makes the idea of the codependent, completely lost herself mother the butt of the joke. How is that funny, it is sad and I would guess that the not so creative minds behind the add are men. Yes it is silly, it is meant to be silly but I have never been a fan of humor that has to belittle an another in order to be funny. The women and mothers I know are vibrant alive people who embrace their children’s growth and savor their own opportunities to pursue their own interests.

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