The pool boy is at work. We see a young woman eyeing the pool boy. Then we see a young man doing the same thing. The siblings battle to see who could deliver a Coca-Cola bottle before the other one. The mother ends up getting to the pool boy with a sandwich and a Coke long before the siblings make it.
The new ad is global. When the ad runs in the United States, the theme will be a new experience for Americans. Hinting at a gay theme in a commercial is something Americans are not used to seeing. This ad only shows that a man could be interested in another man.
Canadians are used to seeing gay and lesbian couples in ads. I first saw the hint of this in 2010 with a Yellow Pages ad noting that a woman could marry another woman. Same-gender marriage has been legal in Canada since 2004.
In the latest NHL Center Ice free preview, we see a pair of ads that showed same-gender couples in loving situations. These ads ran during NHL games so it's not like they were aimed at a more sensitive audience.
Tim Hortons introduces Perfect Partners, menu items that work well together, with human perfect partners. They include best friends, an older couple, sisters, and a very cute gay male couple. They talk about how their first date was at Tim Hortons. Seamless in the commercial. You might think a donut shop would be an odd first date environment. But in a lot of small towns, Tim Hortons is a meeting place.
People's jewellry showcases a bunch of happy couples. The wedding scene is two women walking back down the aisle after getting married. They are very happy and excited in that moment. You could even argue that the lesbian couple is the showcase in the ad.
The Coca-Cola ad is meant to be global without any dialogue. We don't know whether the pool boy prefers women, men, or both. In fact, the siblings chase for a hunky guy is reminiscent of the plot of Les amours imaginaires (Heartbeats), Xavier Dolan's second film released in 2010.
We see moves in American advertising to have more visible minorities. Gays and lesbians certainly qualify as visible minorities especially in U.S. advertising. In the recent Canadian couples, we see actual happy couples that happen to be of the same gender.
The Coca-Cola pool ad is a huge advancement in U.S. advertising, even if the ad isn't created for the U.S. market. In 2017, it's sad that a gay man crush is a significant improvement in the world of American advertising. Canadians have seen a lot more and have cared a lot less.
videos credit: the individual companies
photo credit: Tim Hortons