Friday, November 30, 2007

It is a man's world alright

Some time back we saw our very first Men's fairness cream adverts. And quite a few of us women rejoiced at the sight of it. It didn't change anything in our lives but felt good that finally fairness (in skin colour atleast) was not just the woman's most desired virtue (it isn't a mistake skin colour is a virtue in this country) anymore.

Couple of days ago I actually noticed one of the ads. The difference between the men's fairness cream ad and the women's hit me.

"Fairever" Ad: Asin is getting no attention from this boy because she isn't fair and Ta daaa this cream with kumkum flowers comes to her rescue to win the boy. The boy who had earlier torn her picture away from his now wants to pose with her and the girl very coyly agrees.

Switch to Nivea's ad for men's fairness cream. Here again the boy is rejected because he is dark and then post cream intervention he's almost Brad Pitt and the girls are falling over each other for him. And he gets to play the cool dude and actually shakes his head and walks away from them.

What the?????

I think it was last year or the year before that about the time Kris Srikanth endorsed Fair & Lovely ad that NDTV had "We the people" discussion on this whole fairness cream madness. And one of the Ad gurus (I forget who) said these ads are meant to be empowering women. At the end of each ad the girl gets what she was denied earlier. That being the star hunt and commentator's job if you remember. But I wonder how he will explain this difference that I just talked of?

It is a victory for a woman when this shallow as a spoon, man who earlier rejected her comes back to her. But the man's victory lies in walking away when the woman who was as shallow as one can be has a change of heart!


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