In the 20-second spot, a young man enters his home and introduces a male companion as “Kelvin” to his mother. The camera cuts to a father figure leering at the couple with suspicion, and then to two girls sitting at the table who giggle knowingly. The ad ends when Kelvin refers to his partner’s father as “Dad,” causing an awkward silence at the table. The narrator then promotes a site-wide discount on dried seeds and nuts, riffing a Chinese-language expression for watching drama unfold.
The spot began to circulate widely on Chinese social media on Wednesday as gay groups praised it for its good-natured humour and subtlety.
“Chinese New Year is a time for family reunion and inclusion, and the ad is a creative expression to celebrate such an occasion,” an Alibaba spokesperson said in a statement.
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