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Alabama Tourism – Food Contest (2020)

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Food eating contests are about shovelling food into your face as fast as you can. That’s the expectation that we, and the audience in this ad, are meant to have as we watch the competitors take their places. Thing is, in Alabama the food’s so good that even competitive eaters have to slow down and enjoy the flavour. It’s a clear message with a simple angle that could work very well. Unfortunately, it doesn’t.


Clearly, a lot of effort went into this production. The set looks beautiful. Then you’ve got the actors, costumes, a drummer, a load of extras and, presumably, hundreds of chickens (RIP). Unfortunately, nobody took the same level of care with the script. It feels flabby, as if they’re struggling to fill the time. We want jokes, dammit! But there aren’t any, and the ad crawls along slower than a visitor to Alabama savours a delicious chicken wing…

Sadly, we’re not convinced that meta level of meaning was intentional. And if it was? Well, we’d still have preferred some jokes. By the end of the one minute ‘teaser’ video, we really have very little motivation to return and ‘find out who the big winner is soon’.

Also, let’s be real — the sound of people eating wings in the later instalments is kinda disgusting, isn’t it? Next time, show us the food but skip the gruesome foley.

All in all, this is a beautifully produced missed opportunity. The script is everything. Repeat. The script is everything.