Now, that’s how you do a response ad, n’est-ce pas?

We live in an interesting time where the place that I find myself watching ads, on purpose, is on YouTube. I saw this ad from Cadillac the other day, pushing their new hybrid ELR model.

It’s an interesting spot. Well shot, but message-wise it’s is a complicated one, and at first watch, I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to take away from it. Is it “MURICA!” or should I feel guilty about working so hard in a quest for stuff. The big house, the Cadillac, the pool.

Fast Company wrote this:

Of course, with lines about other countries taking the month of August off and that with hard work you can make your own luck (pro tip: don’t look for that line in GM’s 2009 bankruptcy filings), to some this will sound like part of a cringe-worthy xenophobic anthem for the 1%. To others it’s a tribute to good ol’ fashioned elbow grease.

It didn’t take Ford long to counter with an almost shot-for-shot remake of that ad for it’s own hybrid C-MAX, this time taking the message of working hard is good but for the right reasons. There are no actors in the spot, only Detroit Dirt founder Pashon Murray.

Again from Fast Company:

Do you work hard to make the world a better place or to buy a bunch of stuff?

If a lot of us are honest with ourselves, it’s a little from Column A, a little from Column B. But that doesn’t stop this new Ford commercial for the C-MAX model from giving a good old-fashioned, open-handed slap to the face of perennial competitor General Motors.

Interesting. Your move, GM.