Bob Dylan’s SuperBowl Chrysler Ad

On February 3, 2014, in Commercials, by Magnolia Guitar

There are so many things I don’t like about Bob Dylan’s Chrysler SuperBowl ad and they’re not what you think.

First, I love Bob Dylan. Then and now.

Second, I agree with Henry Rollins (of Black Flag) that there is nothing wrong if you are a professional artist getting paid for using your art in advertising. You are a professional who wants to make money at your chosen craft and it is your prerogative and should expect to get paid and paid well. It is not selling out. It is getting what is due.

Third, you might think it contrary that of all people, Bob Dylan is a surprise to be ‘shilling’ for a company during a consumerist orgy that is the SuperBowl. I’m not at all surprised, because this isn’t the first time he’s lent his image and/or music to advertising. Not only does Dylan enjoy being contrary, he deserves the right to change his mind and becoming who ever he wants to be over the course of his lifetime as do we all. For us to expect him to remain the same young, brash Greenwich Village rebel is ridiculous on our part.

Fourth, the ad speaks as though the “car” is uniquely American. I’m pretty sure what is considered the first modern internal combustion automobile is German made by Karl Benz later to become Mercedes-Benz.

Fifth, Detroit’s contribution, though significant, really is due to Henry Ford, not the inventor of the car, but the applicator of the assembly line. Chrylser came later.

Sixth and last, ironically, is the very first line: “Is there anything more American… than America?” That’s just lazy copywriting. It also argues that you can’t import the important things that America is known for which is blatantly false. ALL Americans (except for Native Americans) are immigrants or descendants of immigrants who brought their own talents and ideas from another country. Not only that, but it’s also possible to EXPORT American ingenuity because many American icons have been SOLD to other countries. Brands such as Budweiser, Jeep and… you guessed it Chrysler.

Chrylser is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Italian multinational automaker Fiat. Have you noticed a lot more Fiats around in the last few years?


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