Would You Like Some Anti-Intellectualism With Your Mac & Cheese?

Anyone see the new commercial for Cracker Barrel?  I’d love to post it here, but I’ve yet to find a copy of it online.  As soon as I do, I’ll update this post.

Edit!!!! If you want to see the ad in question and hear the spokesperson’s grating voice, here you go.

If you’ve seen the commercial, then I’m sure you get the title of the post.  If not, here is a quick run down of the spot:

An annoying looking (and sounding) man appears on the screen holding a small trophy filled with mac and cheese.  He starts complaining about how society has gone insane and now gives out awards for everything, no matter how meaningless.  He’s suddenly standing in the center of a bowling lane as he mocks awards for rolling balls.  Then he transports to what appears to be the stage in a school auditorium with a girl in the background spelling a word.  He mocks awards for spelling words that no one ever uses, before snidely telling the contestant something along the lines of “we get it, you’re smart.”  Boom, he is now in front of a large chalk board filled with complex mathematical formulas as he mocks awards for scientific theories.  Looking into the camera, he oh so wittily says “I’ve got a theory.  No one cares.”  (That may not be exact.)  Then, as the time allotment for the commercial is almost up, he moves on to an award worth caring about. You know, the award Cracker Barrel won for its cheddar cheese, I guess?  The irritating spokesidiot gobbles up the mac and cheese out of the trophy as some words about Cracker Barrel’s fantastic mac and cheese are uttered, ending with an image of the box you can use to make this delicacy yourself at home.


Am I just being a curmudgeon?  Probably.  Am I missing the joke the commercial intends?  Possibly.  What I know is that the United States is currently going through a phase of anti-intellectualism, rife with science denial from both the left and the right, along side a vocal segment of the Christian right who insist on demonizing higher education, even as women fight for their right to an education not only in Muslim controlled nations, but also those unlucky enough to be born into certain Christian sects right here in the US.  (Yeah, those Duggar girls really had the opportunity to get as much education as they wanted, didn’t they?)  Something tells me that the target audience for this ad is meant to be nodding right along.  “Bah. Scientific theories.  Who cares!”


It’s what’s for dinner.

10 thoughts on “Would You Like Some Anti-Intellectualism With Your Mac & Cheese?

  1. Ugh! This ad annoyed me so much I had to look to see if it pissed anyone else off. I’m happy I found someone else because I had to look for a while before I found you.

    This commercial seems to be aimed at the average Cracker Barell customer that thinks education is a waste of time and money and smart people are useless because …. I don’t know why. It makes no sense to me. My father used to make fun of people in college all the time but he was really proud of my good grades and collegiate achievements. It’s reminds me of those that reject light bulbs if they are touted as good for the environment but will use them if told that they will save money by using them. I can’t understand the way they think, thankfully and I don’t want to try.
    Wow. This turned into a long rant.

    • It just drives me crazy to see so many people in the US deny scientific consensus and/or mock higher education, especially when they then say they want to “make America great again,” or “Rescue America,” or some such jumble of words. I’m fairly certain that in a society that’s become as technologically driven as our own, turning your back on knowledge and science is an idiotic strategy.

      Anyway, glad to of been of service. Feel free to stick around.

  2. Glad someone else thought this was awful. Unfortunately, anti-intellectualism isn’t anything new in this country. I was at the top of my class throughout K-12 and in college, and it was plain to me right from the start that most people, even adults, cared very little about academic and intellectual achievements and were far more interested in the sports teams. We were all required to attend pep rallies for football games in high school (and only boys could play), while there was essentially no recognition of girls’ sports or of academic achievements until graduation. We all got the message that it’s good to be average or a little smarter than average, but being very bright was boring or got you ridiculed, particularly if you were a girl. I was even hassled by a guy I never met at college graduation because I had award cords on my gown. They were part of graduation attire assigned by the college. This was at college, where you would assume people are striving to excel. Many of them were just trying to make connections they could use to get jobs later, even if their grades were horrible, or the women were trying to meet future husbands. If we want kids to care about education and compete in the global marketpkace, we need to change this situation, and fast. This is why China and India may soon overtake us world superpowers. In China, academic acievement is valued, recognized, and even demanded. Not perfect there, either, but they have us beat on that front.

  3. Damn… AL these flavors and toy choose to be salty… I found this commercial rather comedic.

    • *licks hand* Hmm, I guess I am a bit salty.

      You definitely are not alone in finding the commercial “comedic.” Obviously the people in charge of advertising at Cracker Barrel liked it, and the focus groups they probably showed it to before airing it apparently loved it as well.

      I definitely do not speak for everyone with my posts. In fact, I’m pretty sure I even stated in this post “Am I just being a curmudgeon? Probably. Am I missing the joke the commercial intends? Possibly. ”

      That being said, and I want to stress that I would never imply that anyone should change their opinion to conform with the majority, but it seems that a lot of people agree with me on this one. Other than my post shredding a horrid ad campaign for Toyota Camry’s, this is far and away the most popular post on my blog. And it is routinely being found by such Google search terms as “anti-intellectualism cracker barrel,” “idiotic mac and cheese ad cracker barrel,” “stupid commercial cracker barrel mac and cheese,” and many similar phrasings.

      And no, it doesn’t really bother me that my blog gets most of its first time hits because of two posts bitching about commercials. Traffic is traffic, and some of them find that they like it here and keep coming back.

  4. Thanks for this post! When I saw the commercial, I was expecting to see the backlash online, but I never did. I have problems with a lot of commercials for silly little reasons, but this was the first in a while that inexplicably espoused such a polarizing viewpoint alongside its product.
    To be fair (to the apparently disinterested public), most of the people I know who would notice the anti-intellectualism don’t own televisions and are too passive to rant about it online.

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