Diageo has been reprimanded by the UK’s advertising authorities after a TV ad for its rum brand Captain Morgan fell foul of the rules on marketing alcohol. 

The ad, which received two complaints, featured the character of ‘Captain Morgan’  involved in a variety of dramatic historical adventures. A voiceover says: “Make no mistake about that man on the bottle of Captain Morgan... a man who led with his heart and showed his crew a life more legendary. Captain Morgan. Live like the captain.”

The complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) suggested that the ad implied alcohol was a “key component of social success” and “linked alcohol with daring, toughness and aggressive behaviour”. 

The drinks group denied the advert linked alcohol to social success as “the depiction of alcohol in the ad was minimal and incidental to the main narrative”. The ASA agreed with Diageo by rejecting this point. 

The drinks firm also claimed the scenes did not suggest “daring or toughness”. However, the ASA noted the character was “shown driving a carriage at speed, searching a cave for treasure and emerging from the sea having apparently dived from his ship”. 

The ASA said: “We concluded that, the depiction of the character and his actions, especially when placed alongside the slogan “Live Like The Captain”, in an ad for rum, linked alcohol with daringness and toughness.”

It added: "The ad must not appear again in its current form. We told Diageo Great Britain that their future advertising must not link alcohol with daringness or toughness."

Earlier this month, Diageo launched a white version of Captain Morgan in the US