McDonald’s Premium Roast: Two Splendas, Extra Douche

I didn’t think it was possible, but Madison Avenue has given me someone else to hate even more than the douchebag.  Although my hatred of the “Credit Score Whore,” has waned and given way to a begrudging tolerance of his presence on my television screen, commercials following the one I had initially written about bore him out to be less of an opportunistic ass than a sad little twerp whose shoddy credit has forced him into less-than-desirable circumstances.  While I haven’t exactly forgiven him for his transgression of attempting to hop on the gravy train via marriage, finding out that his wife’s credit is just as bad as his and that they’re shacked up in her parents basement is punishment enough.

That said, I’ve learned to deal with seeing the twit’s smarmy-looking mug splashed across my screen along with that of his two, equally FICO-fucked compatriots. The Credit Score Whore is just a sad fact of life and a commercial fixture.  I’m over it, if only for the fact that I’ve found a new commercial character to hate with the fire of a thousand desert suns instead.

So, who is such an insufferable tool that, by comparison, makes me want to go out and grab a beer with the Credit Score Whore?  None other than the McDonald’s Premium Roast Putz on the fast food giant’s latest commercial shilling their designer coffee as a competitor to Starbucks, et. al.

[] How can you NOT want to slap this guy repeatedly?!  He curtly dismisses everyone around him, including his roommate, neighbor (who clues us in to the fact that Premium Roast Putz’s name is actually “Tim”) and the chirpy chick on the bus.  He then proceeds to snap at the hapless McDonald’s cashier whose job is to push the Premium Roast from their Dollar Menu.  It’s only after she says the magic word of “coffee” that he halts in his tracks, near-deadpanning without even the faintest hint of irony: ”Talk to me.”

From those three simple words, it conveys that Tim the Premium Roast Putz is one of those “on-the-go” types who’s all business with no time for anything or anyone unless it benefits him — particularly if it’s before he’s had his all-important coffee.  If someone ever said “Talk to me” in the tone that Tim hit the smiling (because she has to) McDonald’s cashier with, I would eviscerate them on the spot.

I discovered that I wasn’t the only one who shares a pointed disdain for this commercial character. After speaking with a co-worker, I found yet another person who wanted to bitch-slap this cat, too.  Venturing over to YouTube to find  the above footage accompanying this blog post, I read the comments posted beneath the clip by other viewers, most of whom were also calling for the head of this coffee-addicted ass clown.

At least I’m not alone.

I think what I hate most about this commercial, however, is that it gives the greenlight to rude, self-important behavior on the grounds of not having imbibed coffee that morning.  Are we Americans really that dependent on coffee to make us functioning, aware individuals, or is the caffeine just a prop or an excuse that we need to either start a morning conversation with those around us – or to excuse us from one?

And why is it that these commercials always use the same type of ”All-American Slacker” character actor to convey these messages?  Take a look at Premium Roast Putz and the Credit Score Whore in a side-by-side comparison and notice the similarities:

Both have tousled blonde hair, slightly pouty lips, doughy features, and day-old slacker stubble to camouflage a lack of chin framing the smug expressions on their faces.  They’re even wearing the same lightly-checkered-plaid-but-not-flannel type of shirt.  Is there some sort of a reason that casting agents feel that this is a model that the general public will connect with?

What I disliked so much about the Free-Credit-Report-Dot-Com commercials was the insinuation that you are your credit score and that any decision you may make in the future is impacted by a flawed system that hangs over your head bearing the financial misdeeds of your past.  The way scoring works, it takes much longer to rectify a delinquent payment on a credit card bill than focusing on years of timely rent or mortgage payments. The flaws with FICO, Equifax, and any other credit scoring system are only exaccerbated by what has now been dubbed “The Great Recession.”

That said, the Great Recession didn’t just happen.  Many factors helped it along, including the credit card companies stationed on college campuses; handing out cards willy-nilly to any co-ed they could accost with a clipboard and a free t-shirt.  The lack of education as to balloon mortgages and unscrupulous banks willing to capitalize on the ignorance of generally honest and hardworking people played a role in bringing about The Great Recession, too.  To still cling to the Credit Score system put in place before a sizeable percentage of Americans had lost their jobs and were forced to refinance homes or live off of credit to survive seems to be extremely unfair.  With that in mind, it’s precisely why I hate the “message” buried in the Free-Credit-Report-Dot-Com commercials.

I hate the McDonald’s Premium Roast Putz commercial for a similar reason about what it implies about us as a society.  McDonald’s seems to be insisting that no one is really accountable for their own actions.  It’s okay for Tim to act like a snide little shit heel because it’s not Tim being an asshole, it’s Tim’s lack of coffee (or insert your “substance of choice” here) that’s making him be an asshole.  He’s not accountable for being a dick to everyone around him.  It’s perfectly acceptable to blame outside circumstances for the Premium Roast Putz’s behavior.  His dependency upon coffee to function and act like a normal human being has been impeded and that’s precisely why Tim will take your fucking head off….And that’s okay!  Just overlook it!  Tim will go back to being the semi-congenial slacker with a modicum of personality that he is once he’s downed a cup or two of joe.  But before then… Look out, because this boy’s got a license to douche!

Tim, the McDonald’s Premium Roast Putz now joins the Credit Score Whore in the hallowed halls of commercial douchedom.  Which, actually, is not so much a hallowed hall as it is a narrow, poo-packed sphincter reserved for swinging dingleberries like these guys and the advertising executives who believe that characters like this “speak to” the American public or serve as an accurate representation of society as a whole.

And by the way… Screw you, McDonald’s!  I prefer tea anyway!

  • Cliff
    December 6, 2010

    Very good commentary about the fall of civility, and with it, the castration of the American male. Look at pop history: would we every see John Wayne or Steve McQueen act like a douche bag without their morning coffee? Probably not. They must have needed coffee to calm them down after a hard day of shagging starlets and killing villains on their movie sets.

    What kind of shit bag goes around in life like Tim the coffee douche nozzle? He looks dirty and waif like. He probably needs his next lover to be a mother figure for him. I bet he tells women he listen to the indigo girls to be all sensitive….

    Good article and I agree with you yet again.

  • crack whore
    August 4, 2011

    This is just McDonald’s attempt to appeal to their most popular demographic — people with debilitating addictions. Coffee just happens to be a legal and mostly-socially-acceptable addiction, but the underpinning subliminal message is clear. McDonalds will juice you up after a late meth crazed night and crack induced hangover.

    30 years ago the commercial would have been promoting their cigarette vending machines (yes, McDonalds had cigarette vending machines like, everyone else).

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