It is pretty amazing how advertising essentially stays with trends and reflects the values of our society. I didn’t watch this video with the view that advertising presents men (specifically husbands) badly, but that advertising like this tends to reflect societal views on gender. A perfect example would be the Brawny man. He is handsome and rugged, and he can save the day (at least, save you from some horrific spill). In these commercials, the Brawny man is the hero, and the mom in her kitchen is the damsel in distress. On the other hand, this video shows that once a man is married, his wife takes care of him – as she does with the house and the kids. Maybe these examples aren’t so apparent in real life, but advertising makes a point to call out the truths in our lives and turn them into campaigns.
It’s pretty amazing how many different companies (and advertising offices) jump on this goofy husband bandwagon in order to sell their products, once you think about it. I feel like this is a perfect example of the “shape vs. mirror society” debate about advertising: Does advertising create these social values (in this example: the gender norm of savvy wife/inept husband) or mirror already existing social values? Personally, I think most of the time advertising seeks to create them; it jumps in with stereotyping. Maybe sometimes it’s unintentional, but if you can group different ads for different products by different companies together, like Sarah Haskin does all the time in these Target Women segments, and find flawed reasoning, you know something is fishy.
Despite the programs obvious disdain of these types of ads, I like them. Most of these commercials have some genuine humor in them. They resonate with me. We all have our dumb moments and in a 30 year marriage there most be a few whoppers. Isn’t that the point of these ads? To both entertain and resonate with the audience? I don’t see any reason to dislike these ads.
I think its funny how Sarah Haskin gathers all of these commercials into one clip which shows how ridiculous advertising can be. She does a great job at pointing out how funny and true many of these advertisements are and does a good job at making them relatable and interesting for viewers. I thought this particular clip was hilarious for I have seen many of these things happen to my own goofy dad. Prior to watching this clip I had never realized how advertising presents these men in such goofy, forgetful and clumsy ways. After seeing these ads all rolled into one clip it made me realize that often times these ads reflect our own social views when it comes to marriage and gender.
I don’t see how this reflects our views on gender in society so I agree with Sarah Haskin in having disdain for and making fun of these ads. In our ever evolving society with the lines between gender roles becoming thinner and thinner I don’t really find humor in these ads. Maybe that’s because my Dad wasn’t forgetful and stupid, I mean he’s really goofy but he can whip up a delicious pile of pancakes and eggs that rivals anything my mom makes for breakfast. Also I live with guys who are fully capable of cooking and cleaning so again I don’t identify with these ads. Or maybe I don’t like these ads because I actually like guys and they aren’t a burden to me…
Obviously advertising companies are doing this on purpose, and I think the real message is under layers of humor. They show a humorously doofy husband who isn’t capable of doing anything in order to subconsciously tell the women viewers, “Our product will make you powerful,” even if that product is something like frying pans or air freshener, products typically used in the “docile housewife” role. The ad agencies want women to feel like the man of the house while doing things that the husband is ridiculously incapable of doing. I’ve been suckered into the appeal of these ads myself, and will be on the watch for them in the future.
I must admit I have been oblivious to the way some husbands are portrayed in advertising and while I find it amusing, I also believe it is a poor reflection on man’s capabilities within the home. The message I received from watching them was simple: ladies, buy this new product that even your dumb husbands can learn to use. I know that if women were deemed inadequate in some capacity I would be highly insulted by such advertisement. I cannot recall a commercial where they portrayed the husband-role as sexy, which can deter some men from the marriage-lifestyle. With advertising, a single man is equivocated with sexiness while a husband is equivocated with helplessness. Unfortunately, while very funny, many TV shows display husbands as huge dorks as well such as The Simpsons and Modern Family. It seems to be a common understanding within our media and society. I wonder how advertisements would be received if husbands were perceived as intelligent, capable human beings?
While I, along with the majority, find the idea of doofy, incompetent husbands amusing, I can’t help but wonder how I would feel if the role were reversed. If the roles were opposite and they had portrayed the female figure as incompetent and inept, I think I would be offended. Why is it that men are not phased by these types of ads? Then again, all of the ads featured are for cleaning products, air fresheners ect. all traditionally female jobs (at home). So maybe men simply are not offended by being inadequate at these “types” of jobs. I think these ads have done a perfect job at taking “traditional” values and using humor to get across a point at the expense of men; the audience is women anyway, right?
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Depicts 320,000 light bulbs, equal to the number of kilowatt hours of electricity wasted in the United States every minute from inefficient residential electricity usage (inefficient wiring, computers in sleep mode, etc.).