Monday, April 23, 2007


You know- it's a fact- Sunsilk commercials are probably the most horrifying things on earth. First they had the ones with the dots and that crazy Joan Rivers sounding announcer screeching about how disgusting the women's hair was. Which was quite like nails on a chalk board. Now they have these:

Notice how the "dumb blonde" in jokes is never a man? See, because while men are precious, unique snowflakes, women can be easily understood and defined... by their hair color. Oh, and also we're catty bitches. Culturally and historically, women are put at odds with eachother via stereotypes. You have "Blondes vs. Brunettes," "Ingenues vs. Vamps," "Virgins vs. Whores," "The Girl Next Door" vs. "The Girl From The Wrong Side of The Tracks," The Dumb, Bitchy, Pretty Girl and her Smart, Funny, Homely Friend," Ginger vs. Mary Ann," "Betty vs. Veronica" and "Elizabeth Taylor vs. Debbie Reynolds." This occurs for two reasons: A) The fella's love a catfight- particularly one that involves a "good girl" and a "bad girl" fighting over them, and B) Convenience. When you put someone in a box, you don't have to waste your precious time getting to know them as an individual.

Unfortunately, stereotypes can act as self-fulfilling prophecies. So it worries me that some little girl is going to see this commercial, and think that, because she has blonde hair, she must be stupid, or a bimbo, or shallow. Or feel like people are going to judge her in that way.

Now, if you go to the website, they have these "experiments" which, quite frankly, are even more horrifying. "Who eats more junkfood? Blondes or Brunettes?" And they secretly filmed a bunch of women at a buffet table- scoring up the amount of fattening food they ate. It was the blondes, which caused the male host of the video to exclaim "Well! They better put on their legwarmers and head straight for the gym!" I mean, really- it's just sickening sometimes the way that the advertising industry just isn't even a little bit shy about trying to make women feel crappy about themselves.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

mine is less a feminist concern than an aesthetic one -- the commercials' atrocious use of a "dance version" of the second movement of beethoven's ninth symphony. even if advertisers resort to crass tactics to get consumers to buy shitty products, must they tarnish beautiful music in the process? must they?

-- mjr