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McDonald’s withdraws “offensive” advert following complaints

Viewers thought it "exploited child bereavement"

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McDonald’s has taken the decision to remove its latest TV advert following a backlash from upset viewers.

The fast food corporation was accused of using death to sell its meals.

The ad features a mother and son talking about his dead father.

The boy is struggling to find something in common with his dad, until he sits down with his mum in McDonald’s to find that he likes the same dish as his late father – and even dribbles tartar sauce on his chin just the same as him.

The advert has had hundreds of complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority (Credit: McDonald’s)

The commercial will be removed from all media this week and the chain claims it will review its creative process to avoid a repeat of the incident.

“It was never our intention to cause any upset,” read the statement.

“We are particularly sorry that the advert may have disappointed those people who are most important to us – our customers.

“Due to the lead-times required by some broadcasters, the last advert will air on Wednesday 17 May.

“We will also review our creative process to ensure this situation never occurs again.”

An earlier statement read: “We wanted to highlight the role McDonald’s has played in our customers’ everyday lives – both in good and difficult times.”

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The Advertising Standards Authority said that they had received over 100 complaints by Monday – since the advert’s first broadcast on Friday.

They told The Guardian: “Complainants have objected that it is inappropriate and insensitive to use bereavement and grief to sell fast food.

“Some complainants have referenced the proximity to Father’s Day. We’re carefully assessing the complaints but no decision has been reached on whether there are grounds to launch an investigation.”

Twitter users couldn’t believe it, and one said: “I lost my father when I was a child and I find the latest McDonald’s advert disgusting and offensive. Shame on you!…”

“@McDonaldsUK What is up with your new advert! Very disrespectful to bereaved families and upsetting! #Awful”, said another.

Another thought the ad was absurd: “What the hell is that @McDonalds ad? 😂 Why are they relating a fillet o’ fish to a kids dead dad? Think Ronald was on a come down makin that.”

Some seemed to think that it might have been made to purposefully get press attention.

“Mcdonalds latest advert is atrocious, genuinely wondering if big brands are using 2017 as the true test re no publicity is bad publicity,” said one suspect user.

Another said the same: “I bet McDonalds are lovin’ it today. They’re getting way more publicity than they could have possibly dreamed of with their new advert.”

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