The star of the new critically-acclaimed film Manchester By The Sea, reserved his best acting performance for Saturday Night Live. This past weekend, Casey Affleck hosted the late night sketch show and did not disappoint, portraying the perfect working class Dunkin' Donuts customer... from Boston of course.
Casey, and his brother Ben Affleck, grew up in the Boston area and are quite familiar with the culture there. Dunkin' Donuts is a big part of that culture, and SNL channeled it perfectly in this fake commercial for the brand.
The honest and genuine delivery from Affleck makes this sketch work on so many levels. It's embellishing the silly "customer testimonials" aspect of these ads, while also infusing a hilarious dose of reality. Early morning coffee shops are all about the working class. While most middle class workers typically arrive post-7:30 a.m., the character depicted by Casey would be the guy who gets there at 6 a.m. everyday.
The best line in the skit has to be, "Yeah, I come down to Dunkin' every day. Grab a cruller, have an extra large, three Parliaments, take a big dump, that's kind of the routine." Later on, he introduces us to the "Vanilla Nut Tap," which isn't a beverage, but a slap to his buddy's genitalia. The sketch proves that product placement doesn't have to come at the expense of comedy.
Dunkin' Donuts has expanded nationwide over the past few years, but it will always be synonymous with the east coast. In Boston alone, there are franchises crisscrossing the city, seemingly on every single block. It only makes sense, considering the company was founded in nearby Quincy, Massachusetts.
The Daily Beast reports that nearly 4 out of 10 chain restaurants in Boston is a Dunkin' Donuts—this is akin to the quantity of Starbucks shops in Seattle. Dunkin' has continually forged westward across America, as well as expanding abroad. There are even a franchises in Islamabad and Karachi, Pakistan.
Anyone who has been to a Dunkin' Donuts knows that it's most supreme feature is its coffee. The donuts are decent, but if you go late in the morning they tend to be less fresh. The coffee, on the other hand, is always freshly brewed and comes in a variety of tasty flavors.
Maybe some people will be deterred by Casey Affleck's character in the faux-commercial, but not me. If anything, that sketch made me crave Dunkin' even more. Time to go purchase some of that DD coffee at my neighborhood grocery store.