Note the lyrics: "It's American time, it's Miller time."
As I've noted before, Toni Morrison has summed up what's going on in terms of race here most succinctly: "American means white."
But then, these people aren't just white, are they?
Noting that "the whiteness of the ad is purposeful," Lisa continues, "Miller is selling a specific version of 'America' characterized by white people, urban life, sex-mixed socializing and, also, really bad music."
These are young, apparently professional, urbanized, heterosexual white people. Various other sorts of Americans are just as likely (and in some cases, even more likely?) to drink Miller beer, but they were excluded by this ad's makers from representing America to the Vietnamese.
Are you aware of other ad campaigns that sell something distinctly "American" in other countries? If so, do they also represent American-ness with exclusively white Americans?
Here's a link to a brief feature on the Miller ad at Adweek; it describes the ad, but fails to label the whiteness of these people, who instead get labeled "young urbanites."
Young urbanites . . . are young people of color who live in cities commonly described that way? Or is that term a sort of code or euphemism reserved for young white people who live and/or work in a city?
And finally, speaking of terminology, I put America in quotation marks in this post's title in recognition of the illusory, fantasized "America" that this Miller ad promotes, but also to acknowledge the problems that many have pointed out with referring to the United States as "America." I try to avoid using "American" that way, but I've yet to refer to a person with U.S. citizenship as a "United Statesian."
Back in 1986, Rachel F. Weller declared herself a United Statesian in the pages of the New York Times, because, she wrote, the word American "implies an unbecoming arrogance on the part of one segment of the vast Western Hemisphere." Obviously, her example hasn't caught on in the ensuing decades, but again, given the existence of other Americas, it makes sense that so-called Americans should be calling themselves something else instead.
[Here's one more stark example of common white United Statesian conceptions of white people as the best representatives for "America" in other countries ; it's a 22-second snippet from FOX News -- which I can't figure out how to embed here -- that took place during last summer's Olympics.]