Eat Woys Crackers

Returning to the subject of Thai culture, there is an interesting series of print advertisements running in the BTS Skytrain stations.  These are for Woys Crackers, a cheese-flavored cracker sandwiched with a butter-like spread.  The ads have some clever wordplay, which is a common feature of the Thai language.

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These are the cracker’s normal packaging.  It shows a group or friends or siblings laughing.  The script reads “Woys: with creamy butter” and “creamy butter” is actually a phonetic translation of the English words.  If you want to sound Thai, accent the second syllable of both words: “Cree-MEE But-TUH”.

As their spokesman, the manufacturer has hired the biggest movie and TV star in Thailand, a comedian named Petchtai Wongkamlao (pictured below) who goes by the stage name Mum Jokmok.  His nickname, “Mum” (หม่ำ) is a funny word for “eat”, kind of describing how a child might eat food. 

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Mum Jokmok is the hardest working man in Thai showbiz right now, producing an endless stream of films.  He has a very expressive face and a gift for physical comedy.  Playing off the meaning of his name, the ad reads “Mum Woys” – both his name and the name of the crackers, as well as “Eat Woys”.

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The series of billboards continues in a spoof of the original packaging, in which he plays, with the help of some clever photoshopping, all three of the characters in the photo.

That must answer the question – they are siblings rather than just friends, right?  But how does the mother look?

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That question is answered in another billboard, where we see that the mother is another actor and Mum is the father as well as the children.  The tag line: “Eat Woys together with the family.”

Thai advertising is generally clever (although prone to a bit of base humor) and this is a good example of it.

 

0 thoughts on “Eat Woys Crackers

  1. Interesting – gee, it would be tough for an outsider to work as a copywriter immediately. There’s so many cultural and pop culture references that an outsider will miss.

  2. These are the things I take for granted in US and Taiwan… I would be fascinated by this if I were learning a foreign language and see these kind of advertising too

  3. Clever but I’m not sure I’d want to eat the product – I refuse to eat the cheese crackers with peanut butter or cheddar cheese food… Maybe a taste just to say I had some. But he does have a friendly face and makes me want to smile.

  4. Are you learning to read and write Thai as well as speak it?? VERY difficult language…I never did learn to use the “tones” correctly….I am sure that I made some people laugh after I left them with my butchered Thai….lol. I am trying to think of some of the clever ads we saw when we were there…memory fails me and I don’t know that Pat was aware of the “word play ” that was involved. Ruth Ann

  5. Are you learning to read and write Thai as well as speak it?? VERY difficult language…I never did learn to use the “tones” correctly….I am sure that I made some people laugh after I left them with my butchered Thai….lol. I am trying to think of some of the clever ads we saw when we were there…memory fails me and I don’t know that Pat was aware of the “word play ” that was involved. Ruth Ann

  6. @RedStarr5 – She’s a comedianne named “Tuk”, also Thai.@ElusiveWords – That’s the thing – you can know the language and yet still miss out on so much if you aren’t a native speaker.  I certainly do, considering that Tawn had to help me decode the double meaning in the ad.@Wangium – However, you are not fascinated by this since you aren’t learning Thai, right?  =P@murisopsis – The funny billboards don’t make me any more interested in the crackers.@Dezinerdreams – You’ve posted some really funny adverts.@Redlegsix – Yes, started learning to read and write shortly after learning to speak.  It makes it easier as Thai is a very phonetic language.

  7. Sounds like our American pitchman, George Foreman. He actually named all of his kids George, even the girls. He appears in many ads as well…

  8. @Rm2046 – I was looking at the details and they really did a good job, didn’t they?@free2chuze – Keep trying; it is a fun language na khrab.@ClassandSass – Welcome.  Glad you enjoyed and you’re welcome back anytime.@Jillycarmel – Laughing along with your boss is always a good idea, isn’t it?@stebow – That’s an apt comparison.  Didn’t think of it myself, so thanks for bringing it up.

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