Boss Coffee

I should probably remember that ‘globally famous’ includes sometimes being famous in other countries that don’t revolve around my life. Why is it so weird that Tommy Lee Jones is a spokesperson for Boss coffee? It’s not, and I need to remind myself of that.



In this series of commercials for Boss coffee Tommy Lee Jones plays an alien who has come to earth and is learning about it and the people that inhabit it. In every commercial he has a new profession where he comments on human behaviour as strange but then always ends with something along the lines of ‘but they have alright canned coffee’. If you haven’t seen them, please do, because they’re both funny and classic Tommy Lee Jones. This is not the first promotional campaign Jones has signed up for, he is in fact quite popular in Japan and has recently signed on to join SoftBank’s long-running series of White Family commercials. In all of Jones’s commercials he plays his classic deadpan serious  and yet likeable persona.



Apparently Jones visits Japan regularly and genuinely enjoys the culture and country so much so that Japan is the only country he still visits while promoting his films. After the Japanese earthquake and tsunami, Jones was the only foreigner to sing in a commercial intended to raise the countries spirits with other Japanese celebrities. Not only has Jones become such a familiar face and active member within Japanese media but he seems to have developed such a strong personal relationship with the people and culture of Japan.

I guess in a way my original reaction of ‘what?! why Tommy Lee Jones?’ just ties back to the stereotype of Japan being weird. I mean looking at why Tommy Lee Jones is so prevalent there, watching the commercials and enjoying them myself, I can understand why this relationship exists… or at least I think I do.


  1. It is an interesting reflection that you feel strange about Tommy Lee Jones existing outside of the Western media sphere. It is easy to forget that Western and Eastern media is not separate but actually often mixed together. I’m sure you know that several Western movies were based on Eastern originals ( It is great that you are pointing out we lived a shared world and media space, and that our celebrities are celebrities no matter which continent they are on.


  2. I always like watching ads with foreign celebrity because i found it a lot more funnier when they in it. Western media have huge influence on Eastern media, especially Hollywood. I think advertisement company would just hire anyone who is famous and that person can be anyone from anywhere. That is why I don’t find it weird at all when I see someone from overseas on television


  3. Haha! I think everyone’s had at least one of those moments where we’ve seen something from Asia and thought “dafaqq!”.

    Having spent significant time over the years in Italy visiting family, I’ve come to know Italian television for a love of bikini clad cheer show girls and former international model television presenters (some who can’t even speak Italian properly). Whilst these are obviously different cases, I think it shows how much of a role popular culture and national discourses have on what is shown on television screens across the globe!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s