Douchebag Decree: Advertising Double Header!

It’s been an exciting week in the world of advertising - so exciting, in fact, that we have two contenders for this week’s Douchebag Decree! Judges are standing by to determine which of these heavyweights will win the ultimate title of Douchebag of the Week.

The first challenger: Steve Hall of marketing blog AdRants (“Marketing and Advertising News With Attitude”), who on Monday was very, very angry about Method’s decision to pull their “Shiny Suds” viral video commercial following the enormous backlash. You can still watch the commercial on this Jezebel post. Hall posted a tirade against these touchy, melodramatic, PC-police feminists who “wildly misinterpreted” the ad as condoning rape culture and “have nothing better to do than suck the last drop of humor out of life”…because watching a terrified woman being sexually harassed is just good, clean fun. Hall tried his darndest to be as crass and incendiary as possible, presumably in an effort to piss off as many of those “stick up their ass” feminists as possible.

Just for fun, Dow should hire an army of men in Scrubbing Bubbles costumes, send them to BlogHer (and the rest of the female conference circuit) and have them ejaculate foamy white stuff all over attendees. That ought to get some panties in a bunch.

Falafel! I mean… loofah.

The post was called “The Last Word on Method’s Horny Shiny Suds”. But it wasn’t the last word. After Hall received hundreds of angry comments, he added strikethroughs to the entire post and apologized for it… but then continued to sardonically reference the Method fiasco as the epitome of political correctness gone wild in his posts about this equally creepy Orangina commercial (when are they going to stop with the gross sexualized animals?) and a marketing group’s tongue-in-cheek holiday cards.
Hall apparently did not understand that whatever your interpretation of the commercial, it simply makes good business sense to pull a commercial when a majority of the target audience for that product finds the commercial so offensive that they stop buying the product. (For more, you can read Kate Harding’s excellent takedown of Hall’s post on

Hall also has an approving post in response to the new Dockers “Wear The Pants” campaign, in which he takes issue with the fact that women get to go to college and are actually pretty good at it.

Did you know 58.9 percent of all graduate students in fall 2008 were women? Sounds pretty emaciating [sic] if you’re a man doesn’t it?

Yeah, educated women do make your penis smaller, don’t they?

Opposing Hall for this week’s Douchebag Decree is Burger King UK, which recently premiered their ridiculous new Internet advertising venture: “the world’s first guilt free showercam.” The camera spies on a carefree, nubile young lass who apparently enjoys showering while wearing clothes – specifically, a bikini top that looks like two burgers (I wish I was making this up). Maybe she’s a never-nude. She also never washes her hair; I guess that’s not sexy enough. A new video is posted at 9:30 every morning, so you can pretend that you’re a real voyeur watching a real girl “shake her bits to the hits,” in the charming language of the BK ad copy (are you uncomfortable yet?).
It seems that Burger King’s market research has shown that “breakfast is a male-centric audience for Burger King.” The Singing in the Shower campaign is objectifying, skeezy and simply ludicrous. No woman with a hand-held showerhead uses it solely to sing into. Come on.

by Sara Reihani
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5 Comments Have Been Posted

That Burger King ad isn't

That Burger King ad isn't half as creepy as one I remember from Super Bowl 2006. (The only reason I remember the year is that the next day I would disastrously bomb a pre-calc test in my sophomore year of high school.) In that one, they had this show-tune-style number with the "Whopperettes" in which every woman dancing was dressed in a costume that resembled a part of a burger (tomato, onion, lettuce, etc.) and at the very end of the commercial, they were all literally hoisted by a wire and <i>stacked on top of one another</i> to make a "burger" out of women—and the absolute worst part is that you could audibly hear them go "oof!" or "ouch!" as they were being dogpiled!!

I was kind of out of the feminist loop at age 15, but I still was disgusted by that ad. I hope there was an outcry against that that was even louder than this one, as the only criticism I remember of it was the Chicago Tribune's Super Bowl ads roundup saying how tacky it was, not even bothering to mention the utterly grotesque misogyny.


Ok, I admit that at first, I didn't see the big deal about the Method commercial. The part where she walks in and they're just in the bathtub and tell her they're "residue" or whatever: I thought it was weird, but kinda funny. Like maybe she didn't have to be naked, but not a huge deal. But when it goes to them catcalling while she's bathing and forcing her to perform for them......that's just.....wrong. It went from kinda funny to disturbing in about a second. How did they get past anybody that has to review this kind of thing???


Good one! (The bubble on the right does kind of look like Bill O'Reilly.)

BK is Douche King.

Ew, ew, ew. I'd call it a tie if it weren't for the 'shake her bits to the hits' line. BK UK (heh heh) all the way.

Moronic assholes like Steve Hall are nothing new, but that campaign is so far above an beyond douchedom. Ugh.

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