This ad showed a dad trying to keep his baby asleep. But people still complained about it.

If you’re not barely sustaining your own life whilst caring for the most fragile of beings, how do you even know you’re the parent of a newborn?

You don’t.

Take, for example, this scenario, which most mums and dads have been in: it’s the middle of the night. The baby won’t sleep, or stop crying, so you buckle it into the car and drive around, hoping the soothing rhythm will get it to find the peace you both desperately need.

It’s such a common thing to do, McDonald’s made it the focus of a recent television ad for its McCafé brand. And it’s one of the sweetest things you’ll see today.

The ad shows a father driving at night, with his precious baby buckled in and sleeping in the back seat. Afraid that the baby will wake up if the car loses its momentum, but desperate for a coffee to help him keep alert so he can drive the vehicle safely, the loving dad heads to a McDonald’s drive thru.

Rather than risk his baby being disturbed, the dad shout-whispers his order into the speaker in bursts as he goes through the drive thru again and again. It’s hilarious, adorable, and quite genius.

The McCafé staff are at first confused, but realise quickly what’s happening – and rush to help the dad get his hands on some hot coffee.

It all ends well, with the father travelling at a negligible speed, constantly checking on his snoozing infant in the rearview mirror, and eternally grateful to McCafé for the lifeline.

McDonald’s obviously thought it was enough of a universal experience that most parents would easily relate to it.


While most people do, some people reported it to Ad Standards – the body responsible for evaluating advertisements in Australia.

Mumbrella reports that, “Complaints posted to Ad Standards pointed out the driver – who had a young sleeping child in the back of the car – didn’t have two hands on the wheel, used pay pass while driving, failed to stop while going through the drive-thru and hung out the window.”

In its response to the complaints, McDonald’s noted that the father is not risking the infant with speed or compromised safety, and has two hands on the wheel for the majority of the time.

Luckily, the Ad Standards Board agreed.

It acknowledged that while the driver used pay pass to pay for the coffee, he only takes his eyes off the road for a negligible time. Furthermore, they found it was “a fleeting scene in the advertisement and is not encouraging irresponsible driving habits”.

Despite the complaints, the board dismissed the case, trusting that viewers would understand the humour intended by McDonald’s in depicting this common parenting scenario of the challenges of keeping a baby asleep whilst looking after their own needs.

And so, reason prevailed in the realm of Parentdom again: a win for sleep-deprived, thirsty mums and dads everywhere.

We’re lovin’ it – obviously.