The campaign organization One Million Moms (OMM) is claiming credit for two brands pulling advertising from appearing in connection with TV Land comedy Impastor.
Impastor’s first season aired on Viacom subsidiary TV Land in 2015. Its second season began airing 28 September 2016.
The show follows the fortunes of a fugitive and gambling addict who goes on the run to escape loan sharks. He steals the identity of a deceased gay, Lutheran priest, and fools a town into believing he is its new pastor.
Although he initially plans to maintain the ruse temporarily, he ends up staying to help a woman and her son and because he’s won over by the townsfolk and their way of life.
One Million Moms, a campaign group created by the American Family Association, objected to the show for ‘belittling the Christian faith with foul jokes.’
It says the ‘sacrilegious’ program ‘revolves around Buddy Dobbs, a gambling, pot-smoking slacker, on the run from a loan shark, who steals a man’s identity and ends up posing as the new gay pastor in a small, tight-knit town.’
It urged its followers to register their outrage against the advertisers associated with the show.
The first to pull was tech company VTech, according to One Million Moms’ Director Monica Cole. She told OneNewsNow: ‘It does not fit into their family-friendly brand positioning, and that error has [now] been corrected. They also thanked OneMillionMoms for bringing this to their attention.’
One Million Moms last week published the following comment that it says it received from VTech: ‘We recently became aware of an error in our advertising programming which caused our product commercial to air during a television show that does not fit in with our family-friendly brand positioning. This unfortunate error has been corrected and appreciate those who have brought this to our attention.’
A spokesperson for VTech, which produces technology toys for children, told GSN: ‘This program was not intended to be in our media schedule and we have corrected this programming error.’
This week it has been announced that restaurant brand IHOP has also pulled its advertising, leading One Million Moms to announce ‘Victory!’ for its campaign.
In correspondence re-printed by OMM, Alex Bresette, Guest Relations Manager for IHOP (International House of Pancakes) says, ‘We are no longer advertising on Impastor. Thank you for sharing your concern and we hope you & your family dine at IHOP in the near future.’
In an email to GSN, a spokesperson for IHOP said: ‘IHOP evaluates our media rotation strategy and message requirements on an on-going basis. Our decision to move advertising units on a network is based on our business and performance criteria.’
One Million Moms routinely attacks TV shows and brands, typically if they include LGBT representation in programs or adverts. It recently criticized H&M for including a trans model in an advert – despite the fact the woman concerned was not actually transgender.
Last fall, the group attacked the relaunched Muppets Show for being ‘perverted’.