Advertising Standards Board (ASB) has ruled in favour of Specsavers TVC which was accused of reverse sexism, objectifying the male body and insulting the intelligence of women.
Check out the TVC below:
A sample of comments which the complainant/s made regarding this advertisement included the following:
- It’s probably the most blatantly sexist advertisement on TV and belongs in the early 1970’s. it sexually objectifies men and insults the intelligence of women. it has a very smutty dirty undertone.
- Simply reverse the sexes for a moment.
- Old man his daughter is visiting. Same scenario. I’m not spending your inheritance, i’m leaving it to Roxanne- cut to clantily clad maid dusting furniture.
- It really is disgusting and had the sexes been reversed wouldn’t have lasted a single night. in fact it would never have been aired once with the sexes reversed. therefore, i put it to you that there is NO room for smutty, suggestive, sexist advertising on Tv regardless of which gender it offends.
In response to the reverse sexism claims, a representative from Specsavers said: “The intention of the advertisement is to appeal to our Over 60’s demographic where we believe the humour is a light hearted attempt to speak to our young at heart audience. The advertisement is a topical scenario relating to inheritance that our Over 60’s audience may find humour in whilst promoting an offer exclusive to their age group i.e. 25% off glasses for Over 60’s.
“We believe this does not insult the intelligence of women as the lead female character is portrayed as an empowered woman. The female in the advisement is depicted as well-spoken and conservative in both her dress and language. Nothing about her tone of voice or facial expression is exploitive or degrading in tone.
“The Gardener is not depicted in any smutty, suggestive or sexist scenario within the advertisement. The male gardener in this advertisement is presented in a positive and appealing manner.”
In its ruling, the ASB said they considered that “the depiction of the man enjoying the woman’s admiration and the woman openly admiring the man are not depictions which humiliate and amount to discrimination or vilification against either gender.
The Board recognised that there is a genuine concern regarding the stereotyping of older people as being less capable or intelligent but considered that in this instance the woman is portrayed as being happy, in control and aware of her actions and comments, and having a joke at her son’s expense.”
All complaints were dismissed.