copyright © josh milton 2017
Preface: Do sexist stereotypes still exist in our modern Britain?
One of the most defining moments in British history and culture was the Suffragette Movement. The unison of a group of women brought the beginning of the feminist movement and an end to women's only uses being: cleaning, cooking and taking care of children. These tasks were now a convention of the past and brought a new archetype of woman. One that is strong, independent and intelligent.
However, some people in this modernised world still believe in the ways of old. The lifestyle of now starkly contrasts those of the early 20th century man, yet this mignon of people continue to hold and abide to tradition. Even a few multi-million pound companies do.
All companies possess a target demographic (though they would prefer all of us to buy their products) that they tailor their advertisements to. Take Cif. The company known for selling an array of colourful cleansing utensils 2012 approach to endorsing their products is reinventing the bland commercial market. The ad nauseam of popular fairy tale scenarios is the outcome of this. These beloved characters become nothing more than tools of promotion and consumerism. This facade of whimsical light-heartedness hides evils that would make even the Evil Queen's skin crawl. At the very least this betters the deadpanned fast-food commercials that we are used to.
The premise of one Cif fairy tale is simple. A once glorious kingdom has been stricken by quite the "tribulation" as it has been cursed in eternal grime. Kings, princes and knights in shining armour alike have all endeavoured to take on this monolithic task, only to fail miserably. All hope is lost, that is, until suddenly, an armoured knight arrives in the hall. With a bottle of Cif in hand, the soldier proceeds to effortlessly clean the castle, returning the foul estate to its former glittering glory. Having failed, the other males can only look in awe as this masked mensch bests them all. Degrading them to nothing more than bumbling idiots.
The Narrater chronicles how "The knight was now Queen of the land". This narration occurring simultaneously as the cavalier expels it's pseudonym, revealing to both fellow knights and viewers that the only person in the entire realm capable of tackling the burden of muck was a woman. The female accordingly sits proudly on her throne, redeeming her standing in the social ladder, but then metamorphoses into a lowly housewife cleaning a kitchen side. Devolving more like.
Why the commercial has received none or little complaints is unfathomable. An advert by Oven Come selling a similar product - oven cleaner - received over 673 complaints concerning its blatant discrimination of "So easy, even a man can do it". It quickly received backlash towards it even when considering its intentions of being 'tongue in cheek' as says manufacturer Home Pride. This brings a rather appropriate question to the now clean table, both of these adverts showcased similar levels of derogatory opinions, but why did Oven Come receive complaints and not Cif?
Burgeoning among Twitter feeds are the publics shock to this advert. But still no action has been taken. Perhaps this is due to one word; blatancy. The sexist nature of OvenCome, emphasised further by its tag line, is emblazoned and - simply put - is made so obvious that even Paris Hilton could see it. Certainly just because you have to do a bit of inferring to see the true makeup under gridded into this ad cannot be the sole reason no reaction has come about. I mean, if an advert said that only white people could only buy as Tescos and black couldn't, the uproar would be so great... And that why I go Sainsburys.