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Groupon Trolls the Super Bowl With 'Controversial' Ads

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The discount-dishing website Groupon ran a few "controversial" commercials during the Super Bowl yesterday, calling the ads "a parody of a celebrity-narrated, PSA-style commercial that you think is about some noble cause."

"The people of Tibet people are in trouble," said actor Timothy Hutton in the commercial. "Their very culture is in jeopardy." And then Hutton at a restaurant: "But they still whip up an amazing fish curry! And since 200 of us bought a we're getting $30 worth of Tibetan food for just $15 at Himalayan restaurant in Chicago." The restaurant, however, doesn't actually exist?

The other commercials featured Cuba Gooding, Jr. tackling whale extinction and Elizabeth Hurley dealing with rain forest deforestation.

The ads, directed by Best in Show's Christopher Guest for Crispin Porter + Bogusky, cost the company $3 million to air. But at the same time, Groupon launched a website Save the Money where the company will "contribute matching donations of up to $100,000 for three featured charities."

How can the company be so very exploitative but then so generous? It's so conflicting! Here are the ads in case you missed them:

Video: Groupon: Tibet

Video: Groupon: Whales

Video: Rain Forest

· All Groupon Coverage on Eater [-E-]