Kettle that Looks Like Hitler Brews New Trouble for JCPenney

A billboard ad for a tea kettle from JCPenney has become an Internet sensation thanks to its uncanny resemblance to Adolph Hitler.

JCPenney has officially denied that a tea kettle being advertised on a billboard on the 405 Interstate near Culver City, Calif., is intended to represent Adolf Hitler, the Nazi dictator during World War II. Photo: billburman/Reddit

The kettle that looks like Adolf Hitler drew a lot of complaints. 

Bemused motorists took photographs of the huge JCPenney billboard advertising the kettle as they drove past it on the 405 Interstate highway near Culver City in California, one of America’s busiest stretches of roads.

That’s at least what some on Twitter and Reddit have pointed out regarding a new J.C. Penney advertisement alongside the highway. Take a look for yourself; the tea kettle does bear a striking resemblance to the infamous Nazi leader.

A bump in the handle resembles the Fuhrer’s parted hair, the knob on the lid is his moustache — and the spout appears as the Nazi salute.

This is just the latest web-shared picture of a thing resembling the 20th Century’s most famous dictator, following on from the famous house in Swansea, whose slanted roof gave it an unlucky resemblance, and galleries of fish and cats which similarly put one in mind of the Fuhrer.

The tea kettle in question is formerly known as the “Bells and Whistles Stainless Steel Tea Kettle” and is part of JCPenny’s Michael Graves-designed kitchenware line.

“This stainless steel tea kettle has all the bells and whistles you’ll need – a cool-touch handle, space-saving design and a delightful whistle to let you know when it’s ready to pour,” the website stated.

The picture soon went viral, with online commenters making jokes about the unfortunate product.

A Tweeter use wrote: “it’s nice to know @jcpenney use as much oversight on their billboards as their fiscal strategy.” Another one joked: “1% Kettle 99% Hitler.”

On Twitter, @Public_Interest wrote: “Polly put the kettle on… trial for crimes against humanity?,” whilst @hypervocal said: “I’m a little Nazi, short and stout, here is my handle, here is my spout.”

“I stare at this from my office building every day and now I can tell my co-workers that I’m not the only one who saw the Hitler in the bells and whistles sign!” wrote user Tishacombs.

In fact, a number of commenters are actually suggesting that the company intentionally made the tea kettle resemble Hitler just to stir up attention. That, of course, makes very little sense. But it hasn’t stopped people from speculating.

Americablog author John Aravosis says he thinks it actually looks more like the Eric Cartman character from “South Park” dressed as Hitler. Which, given Cartman’s endless series of anti-Semetic commentary might actually make more sense, reports Yahoo! News.

Nevertheless, according to the Telegraph, one reviewer on the website noted that she loved the kettle’s “sleek European design”.

“My kids love when it boils and starts to whistle,” she wrote. “I can not say enough good things about this!”

JCPenney, which recently fired its CEO, former Apple retail chief Ron Johnson, initially could not be reached for comment, reports Mashable.

However, later tweeted the following response: “Totally unintentional. If we’d designed the kettle to look like something, we would’ve gone w/a snowman :) pic.twitter.com/DAbbOwlB65”

By yesterday afternoon, the kettle had sold out online.

Actually things that look Hitler have become a popular web meme – with the genre perhaps defined by the house in Swansea that bears an unsettling resemblance to the Nazi Fuhrer.

Share this article

We welcome comments that advance the story directly or with relevant tangential information. We try to block comments that use offensive language, all capital letters or appear to be spam, and we review comments frequently to ensure they meet our standards. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Coinspeaker Ltd.