Never say "No" to Panda

Video Link. A series of supremely hilarious—and dark!— ads for Panda Cheese, a product from Arab Dairy which I understand is popular in Egypt and the Middle East. I am disappointed to learn that this cheese does not contain actual Panda milk, as suggested by the name.

(via @helloflux).


  1. What a pitch. Buy our product, made from exploited cows, or our masked mascot will pay you a visit. It’s a feta you can’t refuse.
    I wonder if China is on board with this; they don’t exactly have a trademark on cute cuddly pandas but they have a stake.

  2. Brilliant.

    Reminds me of a series of commercials G4 did featuring animals offering various existential threats.

  3. Frickin’ hilarious! Excellent casting and direction. The kind of spots I’d feel happy if I caught one on tv. How come american spots aren’t this funny anymore?

  4. Guhhh the only thing worse than processed cheese, is processed cheese in countries where cheese isn’t part of the typical diet…

  5. Great. Now that Panda’s raised the bar, U.S. marketing teams are just gonna send employees out to physically threaten customers.

    That panda’s kind of a dick…

      1. You got it all wrong, Gilbert. It´s just that I can´t get enough of this delicious, delicious Panda Cheese. Man, I don´t think I ever want to eat anything else in my life. I don´t even need bread with it anymore, hahaha, call the cops.

  6. The best part for me is the “Oh crap, I’m so screwed.” face these people make the moment the panda appears. :D

  7. Beside having anger issues, I like the way the panda is obsessive about displaying the product. Furry paw always comes in and adjusts position of cheese box.

    Also, his influence on the father at the end. Father subtly shoves his son to get another box of cheese. Anger and violence is contagious.

    I notice they used an overdubbed Buddy Holly song. His original track did NOT contain those syrupy background vocals. In the ’80s, the vocal group who were hired in the ’50s to do background singing on certain (not all) Buddy Holly tracks decided to add their cheesy vocals on ALL Buddy Holly tracks, and re-release them as “Buddy Holly with the Picks”… These cheesy versions have been showing up on record shelves all over the world (many bootlegged, without mentioning the newer, bad overdubs) so younger folks are thinking these are how the originals sounded. Unfortunate.

    I guess their cheesy, overdubbed version of “True Love Ways” works fine here, since it IS a cheese product.

  8. I watched this first without the audio. Its much more threatening without the music, which actually makes the commercial funny.

    Anyway, I was wondering if this was typical of the region, or if it was an innovative commercial. And, if we would see it in North America. Then I remembered Stride Gum.

  9. Am I reading too much into this to say this ad campaign shows a culture steeped in intimidation and obedience to bullying authority figures? Said intimidation which gets passed on down the line (the dad pushing the kid to get another cheese).

      1. Oh, dear, I hope we’re not indulging in a little xenophobia here. Yes, I’d say it is a bit of a reach to condemn an entire region of the world — composed of many national cultures — as a “culture steeped in intimidation and obedience to bullying authority figures”, with the implication that your own country (whichever it is) is one “steeped” in enlightenment and free thought, where presumably no-one ever makes physical contact with another without their full and clear consent.

        Puh-leeze! Panda Cheese Panda is staring very hard at you right now.

  10. Feta cheese is a Greek cheese protected by International laws worldwide. It is illegal for a cheese produced outside Greece to write the word FETA on it. Feta is Greek!!!

  11. The slight hesitation as the panda reaches round the drip stand and then the hand to mouth movement by the nurse after he rips the drip down – perfect.

  12. Random Thought I:
    Im getting some serious Donnie Darko vibes.

    Random Thought II:
    The ad series is definitely a comedic feat, but here’s what gives me pause: we’re laughing at it, because the panda is being a dictatorial, threatening hoodlum forcing us to buy its product. however, this ad is being shown in the Middle East where dictatorial, threatening hoodlums as authority figures are the norm (some more than others). I cant imagine it being aired in, say, Iran or Saudi Arabia. It just seems too anarchic.

    1. They’re speaking egyptian, and Egypt is also a pretty damn restrictive dictatorship — although you don’t have some of the crazy “islamic” laws that you have in Iran or Saudi Arabia.

      Really, I don’t see how a dictator would have a problem with these ads, unless the panda’s actions are clear satire. Remember that these guys are constantly pressured about free speech, so they generally don’t want to forbid more than what they consider necessary.

  13. Anger and violence is contagious.

    I’d agree, after the second commercial, I just kept thinking cheese… hmmm… food… hmmm… Panda steaks… yum!

    (as an aside, I wouldn’t want to judge any part of the world based on one commercial, I definitely wouldn’t want to be judged by most of the commercials where I live (US), yikes).

  14. The cook is saying “I swear to God it was him!” as in the other guy did whatever it was to piss the Panda off. Secondly the man shoves the little boy to get another one because the boy always suggests getting a ‘panda cheese’ product, which always spawns that Panda that harasses them. Thirdly this ad is extremely professional and funny for a middle east ad company; Egypt is ahead of the curb, especially since this has gone viral.

  15. I don’t particularly like cheese, but I’ll take two. Just to get these ads on my TV. The ads here are never this good.

  16. The Panda Cheese commercial received the Silver Lion award at the 57th Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival. “It was good for the region and groundbreaking for Egypt” said Ali Ali, creative director of Elephant Cairo. “There was a great round of applause when the ads were shown”. “A momentous year for Egyptian TV and a well deserved one when you consider that we have to work 10 times as much in Egypt to produce a half-decent ad.”

    Now if only they’d used the original Buddy Holly recording without the bad 1984 background vocal overdubs.

  17. This commercial has pretty much taken over my life. I think I’ve emailed it to everyone I know, and actually forced a couple of them to watch it. I even bought a shirt ( which is the best bonding shirt since my Central Services “Brazil” shirt. I need to find a place in the States that sells Panda cheese, I think that’s the only logical endgame. XD

  18. These commercials are hilarious… I randomly discovered this the other day while in the library and had to muffle my laughter… it’s so hilarious to me how those guys have a crap-their-pants look on their face when they see that stupid panda… and when that guy slaps his kid and says “Get one more!” LMFAO! Oh yeah, and the Buddy Holly score was awesome too… Classic foreign commercial!

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