Every morning I wake up and shower, brush my teeth, and apply my deodorant. Out of everything I do in my morning regiment, applying my deodorant is the most important. Why? Well because my entire life big name deodorant companies have told me that if I smell bad then that cute girl I have been eyeing won’t like me. What companies like Old Spice do is send a message that to be the perfect heterosexual male you need Old Spice, or Old Spice can make you into the man you want to be.
In the Old Spice ad, I have chosen it takes place in a library and shows a man who is split in the same manner of Two Face from Batman. On one side of the man he resembles Seth Rogan and is wearing glasses, brown pants, a surfer print T-shirt, and a messenger bag, which is a fairly common look for any man in his 20s who is in college. In the eyes of Old Spice, this is the average mid- 20s college male, this is boring to Old Spice, and this is average. This also perpetuates the myth that any male with glasses is unattractive to the opposite gender and unwanted. This stigma comes from the idea if you wear glasses then you are a nerd and generally out of shape deeming them unattractive. These myths being perpetuated are false and untrue.
On the other side its completely different; showing someone who resembles a band member from Kiss with long black hair, and lipstick all over his body from adoring fans. All while, he has strapped on him a multi- neck guitar with a saxophone attached to his guitar strap, it is all extremely over the top, but exemplifies what Old Spice sees as exciting and masculine to American Society. The reason this man is dressed in this manner is a result from the myth that if males that play in a Hard Rock band then denotatively they are labeled as “sexy” or very desirable for fornication.
This ad is captioned as, “Somewhere in there there’s a man in there” sending the message that Old Spice can serve as a catalyst to become that ideal man you always wanted to be. It also sends a very “high school gym class message” when referring to the male psyche. Old Spice does this by implying that even though you are male, you are not a true man and soft whichis why you are socially undesirable. Below the original quote the ad says, “Smell Better Than Yourself” which serves the message that scent of Old Spice has more worth than the individual itself. These quotes are placed in a translucent badge that perpetuates the message of elitism reserved for the manly men who use Old Spice. This idea gives the viewer the idea that if they use Old Spice then they will be included in a special fraternity, and denotative thinking will make anyone think of a special brotherhood that will most likely get individuals laid. Although smell can give an individual a sense of confidence it does not deem an individuals self worth.
This ad seems to forget about homosexual males. In this case, I am sure that they have a different idea of what they deem to be sexy and attractive. In addition, for most homosexual males I believe they have a different idea of what manly is.
In many ads today they often generalize sexes and gender groups and assume that they are advertising to white heterosexual males. They also use outdate stereotypes to send messages that show two extremes that in most cases do not apply to everyone. The biggest offender of this is Old Spice who uses gender roles and although the sensational nature of the ads, are entertaining they should be focused on advertising to all the different races and sexualities of people.
Here is a link to the ad: