Ikea's 'Attack Of The Gnomes' Commercial Sets Off Its Own Attack

Ikea is attracting complaints for a commercial on U.K. television in which a couple who are threatened by garden gnomes counterattack. The British Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) said it has received 50 complaints, according to the Daily Mail.

In the ad, a man and woman are putting new lawn furniture in their backyard (presumably from Ikea) when garden gnomes begin kicking over the furniture and then attacking the couple. By the end of the two-minute spot, the couple are smashing the massed army of dozens of gnomes using water from a garden hose. (We didn't say the ad made sense.)

The ASA said the complaints called the ad offensive, unsuitable for children, frightening and violent, and said it encouraged antisocial behavior. But the agency said: "Just because an ad has prompted a negative reaction amongst some viewers does not mean that we will automatically investigate. We didn't take any further action on this occasion."

The Mail also reported that sales of garden gnomes have risen 150 percent since the ad started running in April, citing a U.K. garden center. The newspaper quoted "garden gnome expert" Twigs Way (yes, she's an actual garden historian) as saying: "The advert was bound to cause uproar. After all, we are a nation of gnome lovers. If I were Ikea, I'd be worried. Beware the revenge of the little folk."

We thought "the revenge of the little folk" was what the ad was supposed to be about from the beginning, but judge for yourself.

For more:

- See this Daily Mail story
- See the Ikea commercial

Related stories:

IKEA Kills Self-Checkout In The U.S. For An Unusual Reason: It Was Too Secure And, Therefore, Too Slow
IKEA's Online Inventory Problem: It's Here, But You Can't Have It
IKEA's Clever Banner: Ugly, Difficult To Use And Utterly Perfect At Making Its Point