"Seventy percent of us got married -- some of us twice...

"There are five of us who are no longer with us.

"Three of us came out, and 67% of you had the guts to show up here tonight. Give yourselves a hand -- class of 76!"

This inclusive commercial is the one cheerful ad in an otherwise depressing campaign that includes mostly intimate conversations with people, including an elderly woman who no longer recognizes her own daughter and a widow who has spent her husband's life insurance.

It is an inclusive follow up to a breakthrough commercial Hancock aired last year depicting a lesbian couple adopting an Asian baby. This ad, like the other, aired on the World Series.

Brandweek quoted vice president of advertising and corporate communications Steve Burgay as saying, "Our advertising has always tried to honestly and respectfully depict what's going on in the world. We don't target a segment. We speak to a need, an emotion, a financial uncertainty or opportunity."
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Company: John Hancock Financial Services
    View Company Scorecard / Contact Company
Brand: John Hancock Financial Services
Ad Title: Class of '76
Business Category: Financial Services
Media Outlets: Television
Country: United States
Region: North America
Agency: Hill Holliday
Year: 2001
Target: Mainstream
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Theme(s)

GLBT Inclusion

Theme Breakdown

AdRespect Score: 
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A woman speaks into a microphone, addressing a crowd at a high school reunion event.

"You know, since we graduated, 80% of us have stayed within a 100 miles radius of each other. It's family love.

"Seventy percent of us got married -- some of us twice...

"There are five of us who are no longer with us.

"Three of us came out, and 67% of you had the guts to show up here tonight. Give yourselves a hand -- class of 76!"

This inclusive commercial is the one cheerful ad in an otherwise depressing campaign that includes mostly intimate conversations with people, including an elderly woman who no longer recognizes her own daughter and a widow who has spent her husband's life insurance.

It is an inclusive follow up to a breakthrough commercial Hancock aired last year depicting a lesbian couple adopting an Asian baby. This ad, like the other, aired on the World Series.

Brandweek quoted vice president of advertising and corporate communications Steve Burgay as saying, "Our advertising has always tried to honestly and respectfully depict what's going on in the world. We don't target a segment. We speak to a need, an emotion, a financial uncertainty or opportunity."

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Richard Phillips , Hollywood, CA
Excellent!

JSmiley , Northville, MI
Thanks for including gays as a part of the buying public including insurance in your commercials. When we are included as part of the public who live and work as others perhaps some of the prejudice will lessen.

Todd Hill , Montreal
I like it because it feels very natural and realistic - something an emcee would actually say at a reunion. "We" are included and acknowledged, but not particularly singled out, we're a part of the overall demographics the narrator is describing but are accorded no more and no less importance than any other category. It's subtle, dignified and it held my interest to want to learn what the product was. Isn't that what good advertising is supposed to do?

Frank , Los Angeles
I've seen this ad many times -- but my first impression is still my most lasting: more people are dead from this graduated class than are "out." The ad gives the impression that this is a large class reunion, (a couple hundred people) and to only have three "out" people is playing it too safe on John Hancock's part. It would have been deserving of praise if the v.o. said something like "20 of you came out," which would certainly be closer to numbers in the real world -- as opposed to the real world.

Fredrick Bertz , Tarzana, CA
I loved how this commericial simply included coming out in amongst the life changes that people go through. The comercial treated being gay as it should be and hopefully will be in the future: as a simple fact of life and not some strange or extreme thing.

Zomje , Washington, DC
Someone please explain to me how this commercial is anything other than gay-negative since it took "guts" for the 67% of the 3 who came out to show up at the reunion!

Cullen , Piedmont, CA
I do appreciate it when gays are included in ads, but I just kind of feel that it is completely unnecessary to tell your classmates that people came out. It's not her place to tell others; it's somewhat of a private thing to do.

Cortney , Pittsburgh, PA
The 67% wasn't referring to the three alumni who came out. The emcee meant that two-thirds of the graduating class as a whole "had the guts" to come back and show themselves!

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Hands - Human Rights Campaign
Company: John Hancock Financial Services
Brand: John Hancock Financial Services
Country:
Region: North America
Year: 2004



Immigration
Company: John Hancock Financial Services
Brand: John Hancock Financial Services
Country: United States
Region: North America
Year: 2000

AdRespect Score:


Out Professionals
Company: John Hancock Financial Services
Brand: John Hancock Financial Services
Country: United States
Region: North America, US Regional
Year: 2004


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