September 23, 2004

The most disturbing thing in a lingerie ad since Bob Dylan


Australia and the UK are flipping out over TV commercials for Elle Macpherson's lingerie line, Intimates.

The ad, called "knife fight", opens with a woman standing in Intimates underwear picking up and putting down knives in a kitchen. It then shows two women having a naked knife fight and ends with a woman cleaning blood off the kitchen floor. At no point in the ad can the women's faces be seen.

If you watch the ads you'll see that it's not quite a "naked knife fight," inasmuch as only one faceless woman is naked. The other is wearing a tattered, possibly bloody nightie. Wait, that's worse, isn't it?

The Sydney Morning Herald slammed the campaign, saying: "The ad just seems like a misogynist's sick fantasy, not the creative oeuvre of a fabulously lucky, successful Australian mother of two." ... Elle Macpherson... has said: "The imagery is beautifully haunting and ambiguous."

It's true, perhaps the women are merely preparing to sacrifice a goat, lying just off-screen in a pentagram.

Call me a prude, but I think Intimates should return to the innocence of its last campaign, about spying on women while they touch themselves.

[Related: A pictorial history of Intimates ad campaigns]

Posted by Daniel Radosh


Shouldn't we be focusing on the more important issue here: these ads are really pathetic. If you can't sell lingerie without resorting to including actual nudity, there's something wrong with your lingerie. Don't they know that topless women should only be used to sell beer? And the ad with the piano player is even dumber than the knife fight.

Naked women are the perfect way to sell lingere. A thirsty guy watching football wants a [fillinblank]. Naked swinging breasts want a [clothingitemhere]

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