Enough With The Creepy Talking Babies

I hate creepy talking babies in advertising. I especially hate that talking E-trade baby.  He’s not cute, he’s not funny, and I really don’t trust him to give me financial advice. There is something seriously creepy about seeing an infant or small child with the voice of an adult, and then having that voice tell us what to buy. I’m totally done with talking babies, advertising people! Talking cats I can deal with.

On the other hand, nothing is funnier than adults talking like kids! And acting out skits written by kids! From our friends at Gawker:

Online laugh-mongers BoredShortsTV recently came up with a simple premise for a web series: Ask kids to improvise a skit and then have adults act it out.

That in itself might have already been enough to produce a great bit, but in a stroke of comedic genius, the folks at BoredShorts decided to superimpose the kids’ voices onto the adults.


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These videos are actually funny, unlike those terrible Subway restaurant commercials that are the polar opposite of funny. Those ads don’t make me want to buy a sandwich, they make me never want to eat at Subway ever. Cute kids and babies sell products. Even creepy babies sell products! Babies and children evoke an emotional response in consumers, making them feel soft towards whatever brand is using them. It’s one of the oldest manipulation tricks in the adman’s books, and we fall for it every time. The most popular and recalled Superbowl advertisements usually feature babies.

I’m not buying it. Very rarely do I see a TV spot featuring babies that I want to coo at, or buy diapers from, or that makes me want to share the commercials with my friends or post it on my Facebook wall. Especially featuring talking babies. Sometimes agencies can get it right and create a beautiful spot that doesn’t offend me and creep me out, but for the most part, using children or babies in advertising always annoys me. Let’s stop using babies to try and sell us junk and instead let them create skits for grownups to act out. But keep the cats. There are never too many cats in advertising.

(Photo: Morgan Lane Photography/Shutterstock)

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