Outrage as Burger King Features Adult Film Star in Brazilian Whopper Ad Campaign


In a move that has sparked widespread controversy and backlash, the fast-food giant Burger King recently unveiled a new advertising campaign in Brazil that stars an adult film actor to promote its Whopper sandwiches. The campaign, which kicked off with much fanfare, has quickly become the center of heated debates across social media platforms and among conservative circles.

The advertisement features Clóvis Basílio dos Santos, better known by his stage name “Kid Bengala,” a term that cheekily references the size of his genital organ in Portuguese. In the ad, Dos Santos makes several risqué comparisons while discussing the attributes of Burger King’s flagship product, the Whopper sandwich. His comments include bold statements about the sandwich being “nothing artificial” and “giant like me,” drawing a parallel to his own physical attributes.

This provocative approach to marketing has not gone unnoticed. Critics argue that by choosing to align its brand with an adult film star, Burger King is not only seeking to grab attention through shock value but is also inadvertently endorsing gender ideology and the early sexualization agenda. Such criticisms highlight a growing concern over the direction in which corporate advertising strategies are heading, especially when they seem to blur the lines of appropriateness for a family-friendly audience.

The backlash was swift and severe, with many calling for boycotts of the fast-food chain. Prominent figures on social media, including conservative economist Leandro Ruschel, have voiced their disapproval, stating that Burger King’s decision to feature an adult film star in its advertisement is indicative of the company’s embrace of controversial ideologies. Ruschel’s comments reflect a broader sentiment that the ad campaign is out of step with traditional values and norms.

In response to the mounting criticism, Burger King announced on February 15 that it would be suspending the airing of the controversial advertisement. The company issued a statement explaining that while it has always been recognized for its modern, humorous, and provocative communication style, the decision to withdraw the ad was made to avoid further discussions and polarization on social networks.

This incident raises important questions about the responsibility of corporations in their advertising choices and the impact those choices have on societal norms and values. It underscores the delicate balance companies must maintain between being edgy and innovative in their marketing strategies and respecting the diverse sensibilities of their consumer base.

For many, the decision to pull the ad comes as a relief, signaling that public outcry and consumer feedback can still influence corporate behavior. However, the fact that such an advertisement was conceived and launched in the first place suggests a deeper issue within the advertising industry’s understanding of boundaries and respect for its audience.

As the dust settles on this controversy, it serves as a stark reminder of the power of advertising and the need for ethical considerations in marketing strategies. Companies like Burger King must navigate the fine line between capturing the public’s attention and maintaining a respectful dialogue with consumers who hold a wide range of values and beliefs.