There’s a new ad for Snickers bars in Australia.
It shows workmen on an inner city building site catcalling women passersby. But instead of the expected sexist remarks, the men call out encouraging – one might even say feminist – messages.
“Oi, that colour really works on you. Have a productive day” one shouts. Another says “a woman’s place is wherever she chooses.”
Apparently, while the “tradies” were actors – or at least in on the stunt – the passersby, and their reactions, were spontaneous and genuine.
The big reveal at the end is of course the Snickers tag-line “You’re not you when you’re hungry.”
Part of me found the ad funny – especially the reaction of the women on the receiving end of some very unexpected compliments. And part of me thought, “well, it does highlight sexism.”
But in the end I found myself slightly confused.
The implication seems to be that without Snickers bars, workmen are not just charming and complimentary towards women, but a virtual agit-prop feminist flashmob.
Yes please, I’ll have more of that!
As an ad designed to sell Snickers bars, it seems to suggest that boorish sexism is normal and somehow ok. But perhaps there is a deeper, more subversive reading:
Consuming 250 calories of milk chocolate (sugar, cocoa butter, chocolate, skim milk, lactose, milkfat, soy lecithin, artificial flavor), peanuts, corn syrup, sugar, milkfat, skim milk, partially hydrogenated soybean oil, lactose, salt, egg whites, chocolate, artificial flavor – which may contain almonds and does contain 12 grams of fat, 27 grams of sugars and 120mg of sodium facilitates sexist behaviour.
Remove that from your diet and you’ll be a nicer person.