Chipotle's Latest Ad Has Social Media Divided

In 2011, Chipotle made waves with an ad it called "Back to the Start" — a short film promoting sustainable farming, and set against the backdrop of Coldplay's song, "The Scientist," as sung by Willie Nelson. This Thanksgiving, the fast casual chain marked the 10-year release of that ad by putting out what can only be described as a sequel. It's called "A Future Begins," this time set to another Coldplay song, "Fix You," as sung by Kacey Musgraves (via Muse by Clio).

Those who have seen and remember the first ad will recognize the second in a heartbeat. Visually, the second ad is just as distinctive because it uses the same sweeping movement and the same type of animation. The new promo opens showing the son of a farmer as he departs his rural home, headed for the city with his belongings. It then jumps back and forth between the son's city life and his father's urban life until the father collapses and the son returns to run the family farm (via YouTube). And, like the original, the latest ad, which runs two minutes and 20 seconds, is directed by Johnny Kelly who said he had been very happy to return to direct a sequel, per Muse by Clio.

Chipotle debuted the ad over the Thanksgiving holiday, and while we're sure the chain wanted to capture the most number of eyeballs by airing the spot during one of the biggest days of televised football, it succeeded in doing much, much more than that.

Chipotle confused football audiences with its latest advertisement

Audiences that had been glued to the NFL's Cowboys-Raiders game on Thanksgiving were left divided by what they had just seen during the commercial break. "I'm sorry. Can we please take a second to talk about how terrible that Chipotle ad just was during the Cowboys game break?" one social media user asked. Another Twitter user opted not to mince his words, saying: "I salute Chipotle for confusing the nation with this ad."

A third person tried to envision the conversation between Chipotle's marketing department and their creatives, Tweeting: "Ad Exec: How do we sell more burritos? Some marketing genius at Chipotle: Let's make a cartoon about a dude's dad getting a heart attack in the snow and air it on Thanksgiving." And a fourth person pondered on a rhetorical question: "I've never seen a Chipotle ad before and now I'm wondering what this has to do with Mexican food."

But, there were those who appreciated the sentiment behind the ad, like this Twitter user who said: "A #Chipotle ad made me cry ... as someone who grew up on a farm and left home, this hit home ... well done ... I'll be home for #Christmas."

And there was this Twitter user who thought to remind fellow social media users that the Thanksgiving Day special wasn't an original, because, as they said, "Anyone upset about an emotional Chipotle ad [must have] totally forgot about the one where they somehow got permission from the Emotion Police to let Willie do 'The Scientist'."