I hit play, ready to hate it.
Ready to give it stacks about how brands are capitalising on serious societal conversations for monetary gain. And yes, in part, that’s what’s happening. But Gillette not only have a right to join the conversation… they’re a brand who has the right to own it.
For years, Gillette has told audiences that their razors will make you ‘the best a man can get’. Only ‘the best a man can get’ has nothing to do with what a man looks like, and Gillette have finally figured that out. They’ve been brave enough to transcend, at long last, the vacuous repetition of ’aesthetic perfection’ in their message.
‘But they’re a razor brand!’ the haters cry, ‘Aesthetic is what they DO!’. And it is. But they’re also the brand men spend time with when they’re, quite literally, scrutinising themselves in the mirror.
They’re the brand that tells men to like the person they see staring back at them.
They’re the brand telling men to be the best they can be.
And the best? It just got better. Because P&G made their point not by ‘mansplaining’ the subject matter, but by enlisting a phenomenal creative champion for social good, in the form of director Kim Gehrig. Sure, P&G may have ladled on a little too much ‘American cheese’ for our delicate British palates, but they do not clumsily bludgeon their way through the subject matter (if only the same could be said for the ad’s biggest critic, and perpetual enemy of anything remotely open-minded, Piers Morgan).
As with every subject being put under the spotlight by the #MeToo movement – harrassment, equal opportunities, pay parity, gender stereotypes, assault accusations, and more – the men who see the value of an ad such as this, already ‘get it’.
Agree, disagree, or debate whether this message should be coming from Gillette if you must – but if you’re one of the people who disagrees with the message itself
? Well, then I’d hazard a guess that you aren’t the person ensuring your female co-worker isn’t interrupted whilst she’s speaking during a meeting. That you aren’t someone putting pressure on your workplace to ensure they recruit diversely. That you aren’t the person standing your daughter – or son – up in front of the mirror to have them tell themselves that "I am not better than anyone; and no one's better than me
Haters – you may not be ‘the best a man can get’, but don’t go aligning yourself with Piers Morgan.
We’re all better than that.