marketing

Is Buffalo Wild Wings’ New Slogan Promoting Homophobia? Or Just An Awful Attempt At Humor?

Buffalo Wild Wings, which boasts 652 locations in 42 states and serves chicken wings with sauces like Asian Zing and Mango Habanero, has a brand new slogan it’s very excited to tell you about! Or rather, Queerty reader Mark is: “No, it’s really cool to wear another mans name on your back.” A cutesy play on stereotypical masculine fears, a la Foster’s? Or courting consumers by promoting homophobia as an ideal, a la Guinness?

“A few friends and I went out to Buffalo Wild Wings this afternoon just as we always do on Sundays to watch the sports games on the big TV screens,” writes Mark. “However this Sunday when we walked in, we where very SHOCKED by the restaurant chain’s new slogan which was posted on every wall, the floor mats, the table napkins, and even the coasters; ‘No, it’s really cool to wear another mans name on your back.’ Now, I have 2 master degrees and consider myself to be a pretty smart person, however I can not figure this one out. Is it simply an unfunny slogan, or is it a poor attempt to make some sort of discrete anti-gay remark? Regardless, my friends and now feel completely unwelcome in the restaurant and will not be returning again.”

Okay team, you know the drill: Pretend you work at GLAAD, and make the decision whether to issue a Call To Action and clog up thousands of email inboxes, or give them a pass and order another round of spicy. Because what we have here is a national sports bar chain lulzing around whether it’s appropriate for its clientele (let’s just take a guess and say BWW goes after the male demo) to be so into a male sports hero they would wear his name on their back. Some might think that’s pretty gay, ya know.

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38 Comments

  • Mitchell

    If you have to question whether it is homophobic, doesn’t that answer it?

    It’s a duck. [walks, quacks, looks]

  • JH

    They’re making fun of guys who don’t play sports but wear sports jerseys. So in essence, they’re making fun of the fat guy who tailgates at all the football games and is a superfan, but can’t climb a flight of stairs without huffing and puffing. How is that homophobic?

  • rrr

    Isn’t it possible the statement comes from a straight man, talking to his girlfriend?

  • christopher di spirito

    Not homophobic.

    If it said, “It’s ‘so gay’ to wear another man’s name on your back,” now that would be homophobic.

  • Adrian Acosta

    Maybe Queerty reader Mark would have had a different reaction if he was a female instead of a gay male.
    Sometimes people need to learn to distinguish between homophobia and sexism, and machismo, etc.

  • TV

    hurr durr everything is gays

    Jesus, Queerty.

  • j dawg

    CHILL queerty!!!! It’s just a joke. My best friends are all str8 males, we make jokes. It’s a manliness joke, like a beer ad. JUST CHILL!!!

  • fredo777

    It could be a slightly homophobic dig at guys toting another guy’s name on their backs or it could also be seen as a statement a guy is making to his wife/girlfriend/female partner about wearing another man’s name on her back, or DARE I THINK IT a gay guy saying to HIS male partner that it’s okay to wear another man’s name on his back.

    But, in all honesty, I think it’s probably the slightly gay-phobic macho interpretation that was intended by this tagline.

  • The sane Francis

    The whole “it’s a joke” thing doesn’t fly with me. There is a difference between joking and being made a joke of.

    With that said, I don’t see the intentions of this being homophobic. Seems more like it’s poking fun at male insecurity. Probably referencing sports teams’ jerseys. With that said I can also see how it’s homophobic, so I’m sort of mixed with my feelings. I can see how it’s uncomfortable.

  • TomMc

    It’s an ‘unsult’ about folks who wear sports jerseys.

  • Hyhybt

    I don’t think it’s at all homophobic. Or even particularly gay-relevant at all.

    Now, if it involved getting a tattoo of another man’s name…

  • Rick Gold

    Were I a betting man, I would wager that the majority of those who were offended, outraged, slighted, felt targeted or in some other fashion believe this bad joke (and that is ALL it is) voted for Obama in 2008.

    However, I am not a betting man, so I will not make such a wager.

  • dm73

    This has nothing to do with LGBT Issues. They’re poking fun at Sports Fans/Couch Potatoes, who spend hundreds of dollars buying jerseys and having “man crushes” on these athletes. They’re poking fun at how GROWN ADULTS worship these athletes like they’re still 7 years old and issues like that. It’s at best a fashion joke.
    This is not homophobic.

  • DM73

    This is not homophobic.
    This is poking fun at GROWN ADULTS, who spend hundreds of dollars on their “man crush” of an athlete, and continue to act like they are 7 years old instead of their actual age of 46, with a beer gut and man boobs.
    This has nothing to do with LGBT. Sometimes a pencil is just a pencil.

  • Darling Nikki

    Are you kidding me?
    Talk about overreach? This is a dig at SPORTS FANS WHO HAVE NO LIVES OTHER THAN BEING COUCH POTATOES SPENDING HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS ON THEIR MAN CRUSHES?!!!
    This is sooooooooo not homophobic. It’s looking for a slight where there isn’t.

  • FudgePacker

    People need to get a life. Not homophobic.

  • bah

    “Now, I have 2 master degrees and consider myself to be a pretty smart person”

    Degrees in what, Fashion and Puppies? Idiot.

  • izzo

    to be honest, when i first saw the slogan, my initial reaction was that it was ANTI-homophobia, but i could be wrong. But i can see it be interpreted both ways…

  • Mike in Asheville

    It’s not homophobic; it’s just idiotic.

    Basically, this is a company that is making fun of and ridiculing its own customers — hey, it’s okay to make a fool of yourself by wearing a famous sports-figure’s jersey.

  • Kev C

    Slogan fail. If you have to explain a joke, it isn’t funny.

  • Kenny

    I avoid it because the food is awful.

  • Brandt

    I’m not sure how this is homophobic? If you don’t get the joke, then you are too gay anyways!

    They have great Happy Hour specials!

  • justiceontherocks

    It’s 0 per cent homophobic and 0 per cent funny. And Kenny is right the food sucks.

  • adman

    Let’s count the right wing trolls in this thread and their faux libertarian (the real libtards) analysis. You guys can just distance yourself from anything resembling the real struggles in life, especially the situations that affect all of us, because the rest of us will pick up the slack for your masked phony asses. No, really, it’s on us. Fucking bitch made suburban trash. Shouldn’t you guys be out selling predatory insurance policies to newly arrived boat people or something? *cough* JH et al *cough*.

  • Mac McNeill

    I don’t see it being homophobic. Actually the only thing I can think of is the sport jersey comparision.

    Personally I think we take too many things as being said wrongly. We need to chill. Granted calling someone certain names yeah I can see as homophobic. But lets cool it on slogans, if you don’t like it, don’t go there.

  • luke

    i think the problem is peoples interpertation of how cool is being used in the sentence. plus it’s a bit of a whoosh if you’re not big on sport

  • Jeffree

    I am more offended by the quality of their “food” than by the lameness of their slogan. I could be wrong-o but the only guys I know who wear sports jerseys with their “hero’s” name on it are knuckledragging, bottomfeeding, mouthbreathing heterosexual guys.

    i know more str8 guys with shrines to their favorite QB in their basement than I know gay guys who have shrines to LaGaga or Barbra or Madonna,,,,

  • John Doe

    @adman: I’m a gay socialist and this isn’t very homophobic, this also isn’t so funny because of the delivery.

  • ~PR~

    Uh… no. Clearly, someone is grasping at straws. This isn’t homophobic and I find it kind of funny in a snarky way.

  • adman

    @John Doe: Well, sure, it’s not explicitly anything political, right? Oh, aside from a clear opportunity for the more mercenary among us to take the easy road while scoffing at our expense the whole way. That’s what a winger does, and that’s what I was pointing out. So yeah, I don’t disagree. But tomorrow or the next day they’ll have the same response to outright evil, so I know of whom I speak. Been there, done that, rode in that rodeo and won the ribbon.

  • Dandy Dan

    @TomMc: Exactly, they are referring to fans who wear Jerseys with their favorite players name and number on the back. I guess if you are not really into sports you might misinterpret this, however, I think it is pretty clear.

  • Daniel M

    What a horrible discussion, and all because someone didn’t understand what the reference was. I think the writer might be a little to sensitive or paranoid.

  • Jeffree

    Can someone tell me HOW this is a homophobic slogan/promo? Sportsfans go to special stores to buy jerseys that look like their hero’s: same colors! same number! same name on back! Probably a different size and different material. What is possibly gay or anti-gay about that.

    The mind boggles at the thought.

  • Jeffree

    Something tells me some people aren’t aware that some sportsfans wear jerseys similar to their heroes: same name & number!. And clearly, some people believe that this is homophobic to point out.

    By the way, Mark, it’s NOT called a “master degree.” Really.

  • that dude

    Your making a mountain out of a mole hill and frankly glad I have no chance of ever seeing you at a BWW again. It’s a jooke towards super fans and how people spend hundreds of dollars on Jerseys that dont even have there names on it. ANy true sports fan would get this. which clearly your not.

    P.S i can’t wait to read your next review of hooters and how it is sexist.

    Stop trying to bash a good name to try to make a name for yourself at a joke of a online publication

  • MikeE

    @Jeffree: “By the way, Mark, it’s NOT called a “master degree.” Really.”

    to be fair, THAT is probably Queerty’s poor quality of copy/paste… there are SO many times I’ve seen them quote people and fork up the quote beyond belief.

    I also have a “master degree” (jk), and at first my reaction was “yeah, I guess it’s homophobic”.. but I’m not much of a sports fan, so I didn’t make the connection to the couch potatoes who wear their heroes’ names on their expensive imitation jerseys (or their RIDICULOUSLY expensive “official” jerseys).

    Thinking about it THAT way, I don’t see it as homophobic at all, either. However, it DOES come across as a bit of a “let’s shoot ourselves in the foot” approach to advertising if this is a sports-related joint. Won’t most of their clientele fall into that “dur, *I* wear some dude’s name on my back!?” category?

    There are also far too many sock puppets in this thread.

  • Todd

    As a gay male I would like to say that you guys are ridiculous for saying this is homophobic. Stop being so sensitive and trying to turn everything into drama. I’m sure homosexuals never even entered the mind of the people creating the slogan. Congratulations on your two masters degrees, guess they can’t teach common sense, huh?

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