Thanks, Danica Patrick, for the Worst Ad of the Super Bowl So Far

What Women Really Think
Feb. 3 2013 8:53 PM

Thanks, Danica Patrick, for the Worst Ad of the Super Bowl So Far

It is a truth universally acknowledged that the ads that air during the Super Bowl often exploit cheap sexist stereotypes to try to get the most juice out the $4 million it costs to get a spot. And the worst offender in the past few years has been domain name and hosting company GoDaddy, which has long seemed to believe that the dumber it presents itself as, the more business it'll rake in, as if the only people who need to run websites are salivating teenage boys and chest-bumping bros. (They do seem to stay in business ...)

This year's offering is as gross as usual, staging a tonguey kiss between super model Bar Refaeli and an archetypal, fro-haired nerd. It's supposed to represent the union of the mutually exclusive beauty and brains. But maybe the least attractive aspect of this commercial, and GoDaddy's ad campaign in general, is the participation of auto racing driver Danica Patrick. Why does Patrick, the most successful female driver based not on buzz but on actual skill, undermine her real chops in a male-dominated sport by working with those schmucks at GoDaddy, renting out her gender to provide the company cover for whatever foolishness is happening on screen? They do frequently sponsor her in races, but I can't imagine there aren't other companies eager to do the same. I guess we're supposed to think, if Danica's down, it must be cool. But I've never thought that—not once. You?

Alyssa Rosenberg writes about culture and television for Slate’s “XX Factor” blog. She also contributes to ThinkProgress and


Medical Examiner

The Most Terrifying Thing About Ebola 

The disease threatens humanity by preying on humanity.

I Bought the Huge iPhone. I’m Already Thinking of Returning It.

Scotland Is Just the Beginning. Expect More Political Earthquakes in Europe.

Students Aren’t Going to College Football Games as Much Anymore

And schools are getting worried.

Two Damn Good, Very Different Movies About Soldiers Returning From War

The XX Factor

Lifetime Didn’t Think the Steubenville Rape Case Was Dramatic Enough

So they added a little self-immolation.


Blacks Don’t Have a Corporal Punishment Problem

Americans do. But when blacks exhibit the same behaviors as others, it becomes part of a greater black pathology. 

Why a Sketch of Chelsea Manning Is Stirring Up Controversy

How Worried Should Poland, the Baltic States, and Georgia Be About a Russian Invasion?

Trending News Channel
Sept. 19 2014 1:11 PM Watch Flashes of Lightning Created in a Lab  
  News & Politics
Sept. 20 2014 11:13 AM -30-
Business Insider
Sept. 20 2014 6:30 AM The Man Making Bill Gates Richer
Sept. 20 2014 7:27 AM How Do Plants Grow Aboard the International Space Station?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 19 2014 4:58 PM Steubenville Gets the Lifetime Treatment (And a Cheerleader Erupts Into Flames)
  Slate Plus
Slate Picks
Sept. 19 2014 12:00 PM What Happened at Slate This Week? The Slatest editor tells us to read well-informed skepticism, media criticism, and more.
Brow Beat
Sept. 20 2014 3:21 PM “The More You Know (About Black People)” Uses Very Funny PSAs to Condemn Black Stereotypes
Future Tense
Sept. 19 2014 6:31 PM The One Big Problem With the Enormous New iPhone
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 21 2014 8:00 AM An Astronaut’s Guided Video Tour of Earth
Sports Nut
Sept. 18 2014 11:42 AM Grandmaster Clash One of the most amazing feats in chess history just happened, and no one noticed.