Playing war

Like most boys my age, I spent a good deal of my childhood playing war. So why do I find these Matchbox ads so troubling?

Like most boys my age, I spent a good deal of my childhood playing war. So why do I find these Matchbox ads so troubling?

The campaign comes from Ogilvy & Mather Singapore and has just been uploaded to our Feed section by the agency. The three ads each depict a young boy in charge of some military hardware: a tank (above), fighter jet or helicopter.

Perhaps it’s the exhausted, dull-eyed look on the boys’ faces that does it, or the fact that war in these times of Iraq and Afghanistan and dozens of other regional conflicts, is very real and very deadly. Or maybe it’s just that I’m a grown-up with a son of my own. But the last thing these ads make me want to do is go out and buy toys that would encourage my son to see himself in the same situations as depicted here.

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