This picture is one of the sexiest pictures I’ve ever seen:
American Beauty was a decent enough film, and Mena Suvari was attractive, but the photograph above — modeled after that iconographic image from American Beauty — is a masterpiece. It captures the woman’s beauty, it shows off her curves; it captures an essential sexiness that Mena Suvari just couldn’t grasp. It’s a beautiful, amazing picture.
And if you’ve been paying attention to the blogosphere today, you know that it’s part of an ad campaign from Brazil promoting a product called Fit Yogurt: a non-fat yogurt. The text roughly translates to, "Forget it. Men’s preferences will never change. Fit Light Yogurt." I suppose the connotation is supposed to be that men aren’t going to find women like the model in this picture attractive, so women should go find non fat yogurt.
A lot of people find this ad campaign offensive; me, I just think it’s dumb. Granted, I’m not part of the target demographic, so maybe if I were a woman I’d find the ad depressing and I’d fall for its hype. But as a man, I’m just not turned on by women who have bodies like a pre-pubescent boy, despite what shows up on television; Ellen Pompeo will never be sexy, no matter how much hair she has.
So the ad is blatantly wrong; there are lots of men (and plenty of women) who find women like the one in this ad sexy. And, of course, societal norms of beauty have changed; skinny has only been sexy for the past century or so. For centuries before that, larger was better because it denoted health and prosperity. But I suspect that these facts won’t matter for a lot of the women in this ad’s target demographic. There’s so much pressure on women to be skinny in western culture, and I suspect that it’s this pressure, more than "men’s preferences", that drive these sorts of ads.
So, this ad just leaves me confused, a bit offended, kind of annoyed, and in desperate need of a cold shower.
(Thanks to filk singer Tom Smith for the heads up.)