LOST Media Mentions - DarkUFO

The advertising watchdog has cleared an ad for Davidoff aftershave featuring Lost actor Josh Holloway diving off a cliff, despite complaints that the ad condoned the dangerous practice known as "tombstoning".

Holloway, who plays bad boy Sawyer in Lost, features in the TV ad for Davidoff Cool Water walking along a harbour to a cliff edge high above the ocean.

One shot shows that the rocks jut out into the ocean further than the cliff edge the actor is standing on - although there is a sign stating "deep water".

Four viewers complained to the Advertising Standards Authority that the cliff dive looked like tombstoning - a practice where people dive into the ocean, often without checking the depth of the water, which has claimed a number of lives in the UK.

The complainants argued that the ad "condoned a dangerous practice" that would result in people, especially children, wanting to copy the act because an actor from a popular TV show was doing it.

Davidoff brand-owner Coty argued that the deep water sign and the style of the dive - graceful as opposed to a freefall jump - made it clear to viewers that it was taking place in a safe setting.

The Broadcast Advertising Clearance Centre, where ads are vetted before being aired, said it had been aware of the issue of tombstoning when considering the ad but had concluded that its style was "over-the-top and fantastical".

However, the BACC decided that because the ad did feature a cliff jump it should have an "ex-kids" rating, meaning it could only be shown after 9pm.

In its ruling, the ASA said that the ad made no reference to Lost or suggested that Holloway was appearing as his character from the show and therefore people were unlikely to emulate him because he was on TV.

The ASA also concluded that it was clear there was no element of the dive being done as a dare or performed with the protagonist seeking acceptance from a crowd. It therefore cleared the ad.

Source: The Guardian

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