Neil Patrick Harris Asks to Flip Another Man's Meat in Heineken Light Ad

Is That a 'Gay Joke' in BBQ-Themed Spot?

Published On
Sep 12, 2016

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Neil Patrick Harris is back in another spot for Heineken Light, and this time it's caused a light controversy.

The spot, by Publicis, features Harris talking to a man grilling meat on a BBQ. Harris claims that Heineken Light can stop the grill smoke blowing in your eyes, to which the guy retorts that "no man can control the winds." He then goes on to say that Heineken Light "makes it OK to flip another man's meat" to which the griller replies that no man can do that. Later in the spot Harris asks him: "Can I flip your meat?" and there's a long, long pause before the guy replies: "No."

Observers immediately questioned whether the exchange is a gay innuendo, and there's since been a storm of reaction on social media, with some making homophobic comments on the YouTube video and Twitter, but other tweets describing the ad as "laugh out loud."

A spokesman for Heineken said the brand had had "lots of positive feedback for the campaign overall since launching all of the videos this spring."

He added: "We've especially seen some great traction on digital. We've partnered with Neil for three years to create commercials with the same fun and cheeky sense of humor our consumers have come to expect. He's one of the most respected actors in the business, and we're proud to be working with him on this current phase."

The previous spot this season featured Harris and a lawyer, who fact-checks his claims.