Potential Influence of The Commercial
by Regan X on February 27, 2017 - 5:15pm
In the year 2007, the company jbs release series of four commercial pictures to promote their men’s underwear products. One of these pictures demonstrates a maid is holding a men's underwear and smelling it (jbs). She has a very exposed dress; the public could barely see the private areas. Furthermore, the room is very messy, and the female underwear falls on a lamp, which is reminiscent of sexual intercourse that might happen. This advertisement attracts men’s attention. However, it conveys an image of women’s objectification as a sexualized person and an image of female’s sexuality; furthermore, it illustrates an ideal beauty standard which is extreme and hard to achieve.
This particular picture demonstrates an objectified sexy body and uses it as a canvas to show their product. On the other hand, the maid actively does what she wants to do; this refers to the concept of being sexy and sexuality. The girl posture represents submission: maids are obeying to an upper-class master. The lady acts as she indulges in the men’s underwear which refers to masculinity. Combined with the clothing, these factors transmit the message that she is sexy. In fact, "Thinking more specifically about women's sexual objectification and men's sexual subjectivity in mass media, it is useful to consider the terms ‘sexy' and ‘sexual' more carefully. To be sexual is to experience an intimate feeling while being sexy is to inspire those sexual feelings in others." (Wade and Sharp 168). Her being sexy and being objectified does have an impact on people’s perspective of women. People will subconsciously underestimate the ability of women and some extreme male will consider females as sex toys. It causes women to underestimate themselves as well. Girls could see themselves as the desire of men; so that facing a difficulty, they would use their body advantage to convince male to do it for them. By doing so, people will deepen this wrong perspective, and woman will self-underestimate more. Just like as a Möbius ring, this process keeps going and creates this stereotype of women’s exteriority. However, the picture betrays a female actively express her sexuality, which is positive. No matter how weird it seems, she is doing her action on her will. Unlike some uncomfortable advertisement that demonstrates sexualized violence, this commercial could inspire women to express their sexual desires, which is in line with the concept of democracy and freedom.
The advertisement shows an ideal beauty standard which is unrealistic and extreme. The perfectly thick and slender arms and legs that this maid have are, not impossible, but very unlikely for a female to have through training. Women in the advertisements are modified using modern computer technology to look more beautiful. Most women are not born in this shape, but they are all trying hard to possessed this beauty. In fact, 53% of 13 years old girls are unhappy with their bodies, and this number increases to 78% by age 17; 65% woman and girls have an eating disorder; the rate of depression among girls and females doubled between 2000 and 2010. (Newsom 8:09). These are the prices seeking for beauty. The closer a woman is from this standard, the more popular and more recognized she is. The famous movie stars, models, and even television show host get jobs to reward their beauty. Girls have never wonder whether it is worthy to get this beauty, because of the social medias and commercials, such as the jbs' one, stress on this ideal beauty standard. People laugh at females if they are dissimilar to it. It is not about decision making; it is about the pressure and the coercion from the society imposed on women.
This commercial objectifies women's being sexy and idealizes the beauty standard. The company should focus more on their product instead of focusing on women body to improve their advertisement. Furthermore, they should stop dehumanize female in commercials. People should focus on women’s capability instead of looking on their body. However, that is only a palliative way of improvement. People needs to arouse one's consciousness and improve the understanding of what is happening in our society. Propagation in medias is required, and it takes the effort of everybody to put an end to the massive pressure that women face so that the next generation could possibility living in a well-constructed environment. The key, after all, is understanding.
“Jbs: Maid.” Jbs: Maid | Ads of the World™, 1 Aug. 2007, adsoftheworld.com/media/print/jbs_maid. Accessed 27 Feb. 2017.
Newsom, Jennifer Siebel and Kimberlee Acquaro, directors. Miss Representation. Sundance Film Festival, 2011.
Wade, Lisa, and Gwen Sharp. “Chapter 12: Selling Sex.” Ross, Susan Dente, and Paul Martin Lester. Images That Injure: Pictorial Stereotypes in the Media, Waurechen, Sarah. Course pack Gendered World Views, Eastman System Inc. 2017