New Cheerios ad busts the 'idiot dad' stereotype


TV dads often get a bad rap when it comes to domestic skills. Sitcoms and ads regularly portray fathers as bumbling dolts when it comes to the household chores and child rearing, happy to let the better-informed moms save the day. But Cheerios has flipped that script with "#HowToDad."

Released last month as part of the brand's Canadian campaign for Peanut Butter Cheerios according to AdWeek, the commercial stars a confident father marching around the house, solving problems and doling out advice like a champ. He doesn't flinch as he's awakened by a child in a horse mask flopping on his body, and proceeds to rouse and feed his kids -- Cheerios, naturally -- without breaking a sweat.

He's dad and he's proud.

"Being awesome isn't about breaking rules, it's about making them," he confidently declares.

As AdWeek points out, the style is reminiscent of the now-famous 2010 Old Spice ad, "The Man Your Man Could Smell Like," which has racked up nearly 50 million views on YouTube.

The ad marks the the second time in a little over a year that the company behind the popular breakfast cereal has sought to challenge the status quo in a commercial. Late last spring an interracial family featured in a Cheerios ad sparked such an intense negative backlash from some viewers that the company had to shut down commenting on the ad's YouTube page, according to The Huffington Post.

General Mills responded to the backlash by featuring the same family in yet another ad that aired during the Super Bowl, making it the first Cheerios ad ever run during the wildly popular annual game according to the New York Times.

The new ad hasn't sparked the level of controversy, with many of the top YouTube comments coming from supportive dads.

"I am one of these dad guys and I approve of this message," Jef Oliver wrote.

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