Delta Gets Patriotic In Their Latest Ad… And It’s Sort Of Weird

Delta has just unveiled a new ~30 second ad, called “This Land.” The ad is clearly intended to invoke patriotism and to address the violence going on in the US. It suggests that because Delta spends their days 30,000 feet in the air, they have a better appreciation for the country, and that it makes it hurt even more when violence and anger tear into our country. The ad finishes with “up here, you hope that prayers for peace get heard a little sooner.”

Here’s the ad:

I want to like the ad, but there’s something about it I just find strange, and I can’t quite put my finger on it.

There have been some fantastic patriotic ads in the past, many of which give me goosebumps every time I see them. For example, I thought American’s post 9/11 ad campaign was brilliant:

The same was true of United’s post 9/11 ad campaign:

Heck, Aeromexico had an ad recently subtly poking fun at Donald Trump, showing all the damage that borders and exclusion have done over the year (I doubt that ad will be as universally loved, but at least the message was clear):

Perhaps the reason I can’t quite resonate as much with Delta’s current ad is that I’m not sure how it’s supposed to make me feel. Typically patriotism is evoked when there’s a common enemy, while in this instance the enemy is largely other people in our country. Sure, (almost) everyone wants peace, but when violence happens among citizens who claim to want the same thing, it’s hard to feel emotionally attached to an ad like this, in my opinion.

I don’t know. Without getting too political, perhaps the issue is that I’m at the point where I’m just desensitized to the “prayers for peace” line. The definition of insanity is when you do the same thing over and over and expect different results, and that’s at times how I feel about the problems this country has.

What do you think of Delta’s newest ad? Does it evoke the same emotional feeling that other patriotic airline ads have, or no?

Comments

  1. They should have just said “Donald Trump has created an environment where hate and intolerance are considered acceptable by churlish uneducated racists.”

    It would have been more honest at least.

  2. That American Ad 15 years later, blows away the Delta Ad. Goosebumps, indeed – it really was great.

    It feels like someone at Delta felt compelled to come up with an Ad, and while I applaud that effort, I think it’s misdirected – like they weren’t in touch with who their audience would be and how that would translate to their airline. Almost like “Ok, here’s our bit to say on it, too”. Misplaced and not necessary (for an airline), is my conclusion.

    Issues like healing after community violence takes action at a local level (fundamentally on the ground) and people talking WITH (not at or to) each other. It doesn’t need ads about prayers at 30,000 feet.

  3. I’m not impressed.

    There are a lot of synonyms for “prayers” that could have been used. The single reason I quit flying Alaska about 15 years ago was the prayer card they put on the meal trays in First Class. I’ve heard they do not do that any more. But I still do not fly with them for that one reason.

  4. This is a very strange ad because it almost divides people. I think some people would like it but others would be like wow blow things out of proportion. Maybe cause I feel like the media kind of makes us afraid of this issue more than it actually happens. I feel like the add takes on a little too much of a stance without taking a stanc. I don’t know I can’t really put my finger on it but the United and American ads were spot on. Delta idk just too different for my taste.

  5. The Delta ad is not bad until it gets into the violence issue. Then it gets weird. It’s about as awkward as the Starbucks Race Together campaign, or that tenor who improvised the lyrics to O Canada at the baseball all star game by working in a reference to “all lives matter”.

  6. The Delta one is odd. The message I get is “there are two Americas – the angry, troubled one down there, and the utopian one up here.” Not sure who they’re targeting with this.

    I liked the United commercial best.

  7. @AmericaFirst. Of course an intolerant person had to contribute first to this with the standard and boring Trump bashing. I bet he considers himself/herself/itself/themselves the most tolerant person……

  8. The Delta commercial leaves me asking, “So what?” As JJ says, the ad is strange and disappointing. It feels forced.

    AA’s feels inspiring and reminds me why I’ve come to love flying as a passenger and why I’ve chosen to fly AA since I was 14, although my flight last month left me wondering where the improvements that were implemented under Horton have gone…

  9. And as a sidenote: darn, that commercial shows how beautiful the silverbird livery is. Tired, yes, but there are ways to refresh the airline without scrapping it. Paint the 787s and A350s silver mica, add those cheatlines, and the scissor eagle and they would have the most beautiful livery in the US once again.

  10. Yes, cannot put my finger on it, but was strange. As an advert it did not tell you anything about the airline!!! Disappointed!!

  11. I think it’s because people are truly seeking a resolution to the issues behind the violence and not just peace. When people pray for peace or offer thoughts and prayers it seems disingenuous because it doesn’t actually address the problems. It’s additionally such a commonly used set of words that it doesn’t provide any comfort anymore.

  12. I totally “got it” and I liked it. The aesthetic imagery was all very peaceful and the clever tag at the end about a passenger’s prayers being “quicker” made me smile. As a person who whispers prayers when I hear of impending calamity, I pray mine are effective on the ground or in the air! The ad actually made me add a destination to my bucket list – hopefully travelling there on Delta! Weird, wasn’t ever a thought I personally had while viewing the ad.

  13. @AmericaFirst

    You’ve got the wrong guy. If anyone on the planet created an environment of hate and intolerance, it’s the charlatan in the white house – along with his buddies Al, Jesse, and a few others.

  14. I think the voice is kind of weird. I’d like it better if they used the deep voice guy from Allstate.

  15. @qasr, it has an American registration because it is leased from a U.S. leasing company. My understanding is that it is cheaper for the U.S. leasing company to have the aircraft FAA registered so that monthly lease payments received by the lessor are taxed at a more favorable rate because they are being generated by a U.S. registered asset. Alternatively, if the aircraft is owned by a U.S. lessor and registered in Mexico, there would be a higher tax liability on monthly lease payments being sent back to the U.S. Same applies for various other countries in South America too. All depends on the bilateral tax laws in place between the U.S. and other countries.

  16. I think it’s weird too.
    The prayer phrase made me think about praying if the flight is in trouble though…

  17. Maybe in light of Delta’s recent cluster F…, they want us to think they really do care. “don’t hate us”

  18. @Lucky. I think it’s because the American and, to a slightly lesser extent, the United ads are more aspirational. They are about uniting after a crisis and, as you say, against a common enemy. The Delta ad comes off as strange in part because, as you can see from the comments, we can’t even agree on who the ‘enemy’ is. The American ad in particular doesn’t actually refer directly to 9/11. It is just timed in the wake of an national tragedy that touched American Airlines directly. That’s true with the United ad as well. Someone crashed their planes. The connection is very clear and direct. Nothing has happened to Delta in particular (nor, sadly, is the current violence wildly out of proportion with recent history. It’s an escalation but nothing so shocking as 9/11) and it ends up feeling a little opportunistic.

  19. I think it’s awkward because it seems like an airline is saying, “Shame on you, people down there! You don’t get it! Do better!” And maybe, likely, we need to do better in lots of ways, but are we supposed to fly to do better? Pray and not fly? Pray and fly? Who knows. It gives the impression they think they are above us, even though there has been plenty that has not gone right in the airline industry where they are clearly not doing better either.

  20. Pretty strange. I liked the video, but getting into the violence and peace is just weird. I mean, they are an airline… The American ad was amazing. I liked it. As much as I don’t like to say it, the AM ad is better than Delta with a clear message. But again, they are an airline, and should be focused on improving their product rather than a foreign country’s political race…

  21. I really hope they are going through a checklist and not praying when things go wrong up in the air…

    And many of our problems are created by so many in this country who still believe in the red team/blue team farce. We just had 8 years of a complete fraud and liar who did nothing he promised and the same disappointment will come to the Trump supporters should he be selected.

  22. You get an appreciation for this country’s beauty when you spend your days at 30K feet… and for whatever reason they are highlighting that with a bunch of video shot mostly at 2-3K feet?

  23. Have to agree with Bothrops! No one makes a better commercial than Budweiser !!
    The 9/11 ad was outstanding!

  24. The main failure is when they get to the issue of violence, the images in the video are still of landscapes. Violence and peace is done by humans, this would have been a good time in the message to bring in a human connection. Show exactly what violent enemy they’re talking about. Show the Delta crew or other Americans standing against that violence. If there’s a prayer of peace, connect the speech with images of people coming together.

    By sticking with ideal landscapes and skipping the human issue, it’s copping out. It avoids being vulnerable, shielding itself from controversy and direct criticism. We won’t understand what they really mean and stand for.

  25. Strange ad that doesn’t seem to have any message at all, just a jumbled mess of mis-messages (a non-word I know). Think of the money they spent (wasted?) on that when it could have been spent on improving their service …

  26. @Jon

    Being tolerant doesn’t require you to tolerate intolerance. That makes no sense whatsoever… (Though is the level of reasoning I’d expect from someone upset about an insult to their dear leader)

  27. “Heck, Aeromexico had an ad recently subtly poking fun at Donald Trump, showing all the damage that borders and exclusion have done over the year ”

    Borders cause damage? What kind of pussy globalist unicorn nonsense is that? Borders define countries and border fences and walls keep us from being even more flooded with illegals than we currently are. Would you expect to be able to sneak into Switzerland and demand that the taxpayers support you and provide you a job and a place to live? I don’t think so …

    As for the exclusion lunacy … we have a process in place already and it has worked quite well. Apply for entry or apply for citizenship and then wait until you’re approved. It’s not difficult, unless you’re a special snowflake who thinks he shouldn’t have to wait. Insert my Switzerland comment here too.

  28. I don’t understand why so many folks don’t understand it. Between verbal violence in the Trump campaign, mass shootings, shootings of police and shootings of young black men, how can it escape anyone that our country needs more peace… Valid comment and done well by Delta.

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