Sex and Advertising

     |    Wednesday, der 8. September 2010


Man posing in his underwear


We’re aware of it. We see it so much it blows right past us. It doesn’t affect us in the least anymore (well, maybe it affects young ‘alternative’ parents…). Women in lingerie decorate billboards. Eva Mendez, wet, wearing jeans only, stretched out in the sand with a man. Every now and again we see David Beckham wearing Armani undergarments, usually around the time of the world cup or the European championships. But in general, well-toned men wearing underwear are underrepresented. No one notices that either. Recently however, my boyfriend showed me the Aussiebum website, where he had ordered a pair swim trunks for his upcoming vacation. Their homepage was nothing special. Click on the swim trunks and you see all the swim trucks they sell. Click on a certain pair and they get shown in detail. You don’t just see the shorts, you also see the person who fills it out. In detail. From all sides. A slide show. Men with great physiques posing in short swim trunks on the beach. Next to the swim trucks I discovered the underwear – men in boxer shorts, satin boxers, transparent net underclothes, jockstraps. I sink deeper into the chair. I feel like a teenager watching a movie with her momn when a love scene comes on. I can’t believe I’m seeing so much sex.

“It’s ‘just’ men in underwear”, says my boyfriend. Just. This is pure sex is what I think. “This is pornography”, I tell him. Women are constantly being shown in underwear. Billboard-sized. No one is shocked like I am now by that anymore. Ok, true enough. But men? Seeing men like that? Maybe I’m just old-fashioned, maybe I’m a prude. Or maybe I should start being shocked again when I see women portrayed like that?