We can be sure of a few things in this decade. The sun will rise in the east, Andrew Blot will be an embarrassing prat, and some clothing/shoe company or chain will publish an ad with a demeaning sexist image which they will swear on their lives is totally not demeaning or sexist, but edgy and artistic!
In this case, the company lost, which was gratifying. But there is still a chorus out there painting any objection as oversensitivity and misinterpretation. Here’s an interesting fact which I came across in a comment by Alex on the blog World.Oyster.Stage.
Here’s the Roger David excuse from the Mumbrella article linked above: “New Love Club produced the image of the woman as a comment on youth and the national debt that now rests on their shoulders and as an ironic patriotic comment on capitalist recruitment and identity.” (Blows raspberry).
Okay, I know that 99% of people are not going to make this connection, but back in the day, British porn distributors used to cover up penetration (and ejaculate, I think) on movie jackets with little Union Jacks (example here *feel free to moderate*). That’s the first place my mind went.
There’s a link to an example in Alex’s comment. (Trigger warning, and NSFW). Roger David, and Roger David’s advertising company, you’re sprung, and furthermore I’m more than a bit squicked that young men working in the advertising industry are still stuck in those reading habits and that mindset.
Categories: Culture, gender & feminism, media
This was such an over-the-top image wasn’t it.. I mean for starters why have the model look so incredibly young and the mash-up of disturbing messages – gagged, bar-coded with the word ‘slave’, hands in a heart shape?
Yes, there is plenty to point to apart from the Union Jack, but don’t you love the way they pompously explain it all away with pseudo-arty pomospeak? It’s all based on plausible deniability, and Alex just drove a truck right through it. 🙂
Ugh. So many advertisers pull stunts like this- I hope this stuff doesn’t work as well as they think it does.
Eden, I wonder if any studies have been done on that? Anyone else know of any?
Sickening reading the other comments on that blog trying to make out that the image is subversive or clever or social commentary or anything else. What is subversive about this sort of thing? It’s ubiquitous! Everywhere you go there are images of young women – often looking underage even if the models aren’t, and usually looking underfed – half-dressed and looking like they exist purely to have [redacted]. This one’s just another in a long line of ‘rape-ready slave’ photos. And for menswear, no less. Yeah, right, it’s so clever, it’s such commentary, and it’s SO aimed at women customers. Bullshit. The defenders of this crap have either been so desensitised to porn they don’t know it when they see it, or they really don’t get how poisonous this sort of stuff is. Or worse – they think this is how women are supposed to be.