TV commercial causes a stir

Andrew Hopkins

Advertising should attract attention but you can go too far. In a new advert on TV, Volkswagen shows a man who kills himself simply because he didn't get to own the new Scirocco.

The main character in the British Volkswagen commercial has lost everything. At the casino, he put his money on black and red came up. He moved into gold just as the clever money moved out, and now he's ruined both financially and mentally. He decides to end his miserable life.

That's a summary of the storyline of a new VW Scirocco commercial broadcast on the famous British motoring magazine show Top Gear. The message is clear: if only the man had waited for the launch of the new Scirocco, things would have gone better and he wouldn't have topped himself. To quote from their ad: "Life is not so bad!" The producers of the commercial think that their work is plain and straightforward. Tasteless and provocative, say many British viewers about the depiction of suicide on screen. Find out for yourself. Take a look at the new Scirocco TV clip. Should something like this be broadcast? Top Gear presenter and humorist Jeremy Clarkson seems to think so...