Categorized | Perspectives

Holiday commercials – tasteful or tasteless?

Joe Boxer commercial

Joe Boxer commercial

Joe Boxer commercial

Joe Boxer commercial

This year, Kmart has taken a very comical route in promoting great deals for the holidays.  It is not just any kind of comedy though—these commercials have caused quite a stir of criticism and controversy from some people. So can these commercials seriously be considered tasteless or are they actually tastefully done?

One of their new commercials is the Joe Boxer. Depicted in the highly hilarious commercial, six men in suit jackets are shown behind a long table with only the top of their bodies in view playing “Jingle Bells.” Suddenly, the table is pulled away and the men are revealed as wearing nothing but boxers on the bottom. Switching from using the bells to play along to this classic Christmas tune, the men move their hips back-and-forth in unison instead with each note.

Many people have taken offense by this commercial, however, I really do not see a big problem with it. It may be a bit suggestive, but it is not revealing in any way. This promotion is said in the end, along with Kmart’s slogan, as “Shop your way with Joe Boxer.” I think this commercial is entertaining and memorable. I really don’t see it as tasteless while there are far more revealing commercials out there, such as Victoria’s Secret.

Some people say that the reason that the Joe Boxer commercial is inappropriate is that Kmart is objectifying men. Well, for how long has Victoria’s Secret been doing the same exact thing with their women models? I’m not trying to say that just because the women are being objectified then that means it is okay for men to be, but I think people need to put things into perspective.

When women are shown half naked in a Victoria’s Secret commercial, then what is the real problem with men wearing non-revealing clothing (I don’t really see how boxers can be considered “revealing”) and moving their hips side-to-side to “Jingle Bells?” I was laughing all the way through this commercial.

“I just shipped my pants!” is another one of Kmart’s promos this year. When said without clear pronunciation, one could think that another word besides “shipped” is being used within the different circumstances in the commercial: shipping their drawers, nightie and even bed. Possibly not as funny of a commercial as Joe Boxer, this commercial still turns heads. Did they really just say that?! I’m sure this is the reaction of many who hear this commercial that features the option Kmart gives to ship certain products.

“Big gas savings” is another advertisement by Kmart to promote their offer to reduce gas prices by the gallon when members spend a certain amount of money. It is said very quickly and the first two words almost sound as though they are one because of it. It is another head turning moment but still just as funny.

Yet another tool Kmart is using this year is the “giffing out” commercial. Honestly, I don’t find this commercial funny at all—I think it is actually pretty annoying. The repetitive noises of the people as they “gif out” at the amazing deals they received play over and over again; it can lose its effectiveness and pretty much just become a nuisance.

Perhaps the people who overreact at the commercials just need a little more sense of humor. These commercials may not be the cutesy, cookie cutter commercials that feature little kids, but they are still pretty hilarious. Originality can come at a price, but I think Kmart did it right with these commercials and made some very memorable commercials for the holidays.

Erica Abbott

About Erica Abbott

Hi my name is Erica Abbott and I am currently a sophomore Communication major, Spanish minor. I am also a social media marketing intern at Bad Rhino Inc. in Wayne. I also have a blogging internship with Business 2 Community. I am very interested in the arts, photography and writing so I am really excited to be writing for the Loquitur this year.

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