Wednesday, June 11, 2008

It's Quantity, Too

This is not meant to be a series of posts like dude-Paris-is-so-great I'm-going-to-become-an-expat oh-the-US-is-so-boring. Cause honestly, no one loves the US like I do. The US is the shit, and I can't wait to get back there.

But. There are, you know, a few areas in which the US could use improvement. And some of these are areas France feels like the savvy and suave wise man to our bumbling adolescent.

One area is the objectification of women, especially in advertising. OK, surprising, since France is fashion-central, and whatever. But every time I come here I'm amazed by how relaxing it is not to be constantly bombarded with images of semi-naked women. It feels good. You really do stop thinking so much about your female bodily deficiencies when you're not surrounded by this shit.

It's not just the quality of the ads -- though that is different. It's the quantity, too. I feel like the relentlessness of depictions of women being all sexy and cute and harmless and physically perfect in North America is just wearing me out.

Here in Paris there are a few giant ads in the Metro for some skin thing for summer and they do show some naked woman lying on her back. But you know, she's huge, and all muscular, and shiny. She looks ready to sunbathe, or get into a fight, not ready to smile softly and cheer your team of choice.

But there are also two other ads that are everywhere that show men. One of them is a goofball ad showing a guy in just his underwear trying to deal with his 20 electronic devices and cords. It's funny and cute. Guy is sort of buff but normal looking.

The other of them is this Dior ad, for "Eau Sauvage."

Hey, I like it. I'm not against objectification of persons for advertising. It's the cumulative effect that's driving me nuts back home.

A little variety, OK guys?

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