Last night, I was innocently watching Heroes and trying to figure out what the hell was going on, when I saw a charming commercial for "Pepsi Max." It's a new diet cola... for men!
Soda as a gendered product kind of blows my mind. I remember when Tab came out with that whole pink can, it's a cola for women thing... but I don't recall that taking off so well. My dad has been drinking Diet Coke (Caffeine Free!) for as long as I can remember, and I just cannot fathom any dude I know getting all "Oh, no thanks, that soda is for the ladies, it might make my dick fall off. Thank goodness they're making a diet soda for my needs now!" Really, just outside of it being bizarrely sexist for no apparent reason... they're addressing a need that I'm pretty sure isn't there. I've seen some unnecessarily gendered products before, but mostly they were from other countries, such as this candy bar, which I saw once at the World Market:
They use a special kind of ball enhancing chocolate maybe?
And this, which I see in Chinatown:
It's not subtle, I'll tell you that much. The thing is, there are lots of products that are marketed specifically towards one gender (cleaning products, yogurt, power tools, cars, etc.)- but this direct "It's for men!! Manly men!!!" direct approach seems especially disconcerting.