Taylor Swift inspired Cetaphil Super Bowl ad: Was it copied?

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The Super Bowl season has become just as much about Taylor Swift, as has her Eras Tour become synonymous with Kansas City Chiefs fans’ cheers. Using the same gigantic impact to their advantage, the new Cetaphil Super Bowl ad uses the power couple without outrightly naming either. The ‘brilliant’ piece of advertising has moved many fans from both worlds that have now become one as the emotional ad strengthens the bond between a “real father and daughter, living in New York.”

The new Cetaphil Super Bowl ad shares uncanny similarities with a TikTok creator's videos. (YouTube, Instagram)
The new Cetaphil Super Bowl ad shares uncanny similarities with a TikTok creator’s videos. (YouTube, Instagram)

Referencing several markers associated with the pop singer – numbers like 89 (from the 1989 album), 13 (her favourite number) and friendship bracelets -the Cetaphil ad is now also controversial. Here’s what went down.

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About the Taylor Swift Cetaphil Super Bowl ad

The video begins with a father and daughter living their disjoint lives in the same house. While the dad is all about sports and is often seen hanging around the TV set to catch the game, his daughter’s world revolves around music, with Taylor Swift seemingly at the centre of it. As the father takes the opportunity to share something on his phone with his daughter excitedly, she gives him the cold shoulder and moves away.

Cut to a scene where the girl is seen applying Cetaphil products in her room until she hears the loud game announcement from afar: “Well folks, there she is. It’s the most famous fan of the game”. Even people with adequate internet access would have realised who this ‘super fan’ being referred to here is.

Also read: Where is Taylor Swift? Track her journey ahead of Super Bowl extravaganza

As the girl finally comes down to share the room with her father in front of the TV, they share a sweet moment and exchange smiles. The following day, as the girl is again caught getting ready and using her Cetaphil products, her father walks in with a 13-number red jersey for her, signalling at the upcoming Kansas City Chiefs game. At the same time, once her father comes closer to the screen, one can also spot eye masks on his face.

Sharing their new interests eventually causes them to meet halfway. The girl puts on the jersey and joins her dad downstairs for the big game. They’re both spotted wearing several friendship bracelets.

Cetaphil seeks to highlight “a new sports tradition for dads and daughters” with this sweet and emotional clipping. However, its striking similarities with a series of videos posted by TikTok user Sharon Mbabazi (@sharavinaaa – also her X username) are surprisingly uncanny.

In one of her recent videos posted over the weekend, the TikTok creator addressed the issue on her platform. She and her stepfather claim that the marketing campaign’s idea was ripped from her videos featuring a similar bond between the stepfather-daughter duo. These videos also catch the pair indulging in skincare routines as they discuss Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce’s symbolic significance during this NFL season.

Mbabazi and her stepfather have called out the skincare brand in her recent video. While Mbabazi’s comments section on TikTok has been flooded with support, YouTube comments under the Cetaphil video rely on a different narrative.

“Thank you for not keeping quiet! The marketing department gotta run yall your checks! They paid millions for that Super Bowl commercial!” said a TikTok user under Mbabazi’s video, wherein she and her father reacted to the Cetaphirl Super Bowl commercial copying their TikToks.

“Immediately thought of you guys when I saw the ad!”, said another commenter. Sharon further replied to this response, “It’s crazy how many people have said this! It’s proving my point”.

However, netizens probably unaware of the TikTok videos are commending the brand for its sentimental touch in this commercial. Comments like – “Showing Taylor Swifts influence without showing Taylor Swift. Brilliant commercial.”; “Absolutely lovely commercial. Long since I’ve cried at a commercial”; “As soon as he gave her the 13 jersey, instant tears” – keep coming in under the YouTube video.


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