Shall We Talk About Advertising?
I'm no prude. And as I've said many times, I don't sit around wondering or grumbling about "what our society is coming to." To my mind, it's always three steps forward, two steps back, which means that progress is being made nonetheless. We hear about a lot of evil, but the very hearing means we're making progress.
So I bring this up as a topic to mull over among us--especially those of us who are directly (PC grads and students) or indirectly (me, Jennifer--as teachers) involved with advertising and the communication arts.
The above, a post card, came in my mailbox recently.
Granted, it comes from Project 9-6-1 (Oooooh, how edgy!), formerly plain ol' 96 Rock, so I get the demographic. It would be guys--rockers--with average-to-lower IQ's, who'd choose Penthouse over Playboy. It would also, naturally, catch the attention of younger teens, like my son, for whom cars and girls are irresistable, no matter the context.
Fine. You've got to appeal these folks simply, with cars and sex. Check. So far, I don't have a problem with it. It's sad, of course, but so what? Put the half-naked girl up there, straddled, against the car. I wouldn't mind seeing a scantily-clad Patrick Dempsey up there in the same pose.
Say: "Win"--most preferable, or I wouldn't even raise a stink over "Win this"--a little less preferable.
However, "Win this ride" is entirely UNACCEPTABLE when you turn the card around to see: "The car, not the girl."
For some reason, I can tolerate the lower-level objectifying of Prize=Girl (where she's still human), whereas I can't abide Girl=Ride.
For me, whose lines are probably already too forgiving for most feminists, it crosses a line. It turns from "sad" to "dangerous."
I'd like to hear your opinions.