The Carnival Cruise Ad that aired during the Super Bowl was arguably overshadowed by commercials like the emotionally crippling Nationwide Insurance ad and the adorable puppy-and-horse friendship in the Budweiser ad.
Creationists, however, were paying attention and took issue with the ad’s tagline “come back to the sea.”
Creationists argue the line, which was borrowed from a speech about America’s Cup given by President John F. Kennedy in 1962, was alluding to evolution. In the simplest terms, scientists believe all life on Earth originated in the ocean at some point.
Ken Hamm, a creationist leader, wrote on his blog Around The World that “(Carnival) blatantly used evolution to advertise its cruises."
"Don’t you just want to go on one of their cruises so you can stand on the deck of a big cruise ship, look at the sea, and contemplate your accidental beginnings — and perhaps worship the sea, because it gave birth to you!,” he wrote.
Hamm concluded, "Except for the fact that it’s a spiritual issue because of our sin, it’s mind-boggling to think that intelligent people can actually believe life (and the whole universe) came about by accident! Ludicrous!”
Other creationists took to Twitter to voice their displeasure. User @MuskKat wrote “'We came from the sea…’ What kind of evolution crap is THAT, #Carnival?,” and many others echoed the sentiment.
A Carnival Cruise Lines spokesperson told The Hollywood Reporter that the ad was not intended to allude to evolution. "Combined with beautiful cinematography, the advertising spot was designed to simply remind everyone of the beauty and allure of the ocean and communicate the special nature of cruising on the open sea,” a spokesperson said.