Shaving product manufacturer Gillette received an overwhelmingly negative response to its latest advertisement campaign, which takes a stand against “toxic masculinity.”
The advertisement, which received over 330,000 dislikes on YouTube against just 75,000 likes, asked viewers, “Is this the best a man can get?” in a twist on the company’s classic tagline, “The best a man can get,” and took on a number of issues, including sexual harassment and bullying, but also masculinity.
At the start of the video, “toxic masculinity” is read out as one of the main negative issues in society, along with “bullying,” and “sexual harassment.”
In another part of the video, a row of fathers declaring “boys will be boys” at two boys fighting are shown to be the bad guys, before one father intervenes and says, “That’s not how we treat each other, okay?”
On the company’s official website, Gillette elaborated on its campaign, declaring, “turn on the news today and it’s easy to believe that men are not at their best.”
“Many find themselves at a crossroads, caught between the past and a new era of masculinity. While it is clear that changes are needed, where and how we can start to effect that change is less obvious for many,” Gillette continued. “From today on, we pledge to actively challenge the stereotypes and expectations of what it means to be a man everywhere you see Gillette… We’ve all got work to do.”
On Twitter, many users mocked the campaign by linking to classic Gillette advertisements which promoted masculinity.
I’m old enough to remember a time when @Gillette honored and championed our incredible men.
Strength, courage, loyalty, honor, family.
These are our wonderful, forgotten men. 👏🏻♥️ https://t.co/HHy8AYmIeG
— Kathie ツ🇺🇸⭐️⭐️⭐️ (@MustangGirl3) January 15, 2019
Gillette (1989): The best a man can get
Look at all this masculinity😱 pic.twitter.com/VbX2XbOOoj
— PolishPatriot™️ (@PolishPatriotTM) January 15, 2019
Others pointed out that masculinity has traditionally been beneficial to society.
Boys Will Be Boys pic.twitter.com/mNnD5ikWni
— Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) January 15, 2019
— Andy Swan (@AndySwan) January 15, 2019
The #Gillette commercial is the product of mainstream radicalized feminism— & emblematic of Cultural Marxism.
LET LITTLE BOYS WRESTLE.
Despite what Lena Dunham tells you, women are not into beta males & men are not into chicks w/ armpit hair.
— Candace Owens (@RealCandaceO) January 15, 2019
Imam Mohamad Tawhidi pointed out that the ad is focused specifically on western men and ignores harmful masculinity in Islam.
I can’t find your video on men who:
1. Force women to undergo FGM,
2. Force their wives and daughters to wear a Burqa,
3. Kill their women for leaving the religion,
4. Rape their wives because their Imam allows it,
5. Form rape gangs across Europe.
— Imam Mohamad Tawhidi (@Imamofpeace) January 15, 2019
“I used to love beating up kids at barbecues. Now I realise that is wrong. Also, my balls have never been smoother. Thanks, Gillette,” joked comedian and actor Ricky Gervais.
I used to love beating up kids at barbecues. Now I realise that is wrong. Also, my balls have never been smoother. Thanks, Gillette.
— Ricky Gervais (@rickygervais) January 15, 2019
Even former Gov. Mike Huckabee called out Gillette’s commercial, proclaiming, “‘Get woke, go broke.’ @Gillette might be next to suffer that fate, after video by female director Kim Gehrig, depicting oafish male behavior and lecturing men on toxic masculinity. Time to sell my @ProcterGamble stock? Why don’t they sell soap-not their soap box?”
“Get woke, go broke.” @Gillette might be next to suffer that fate, after video by female director Kim Gehrig, depicting oafish male behavior and lecturing men on toxic masculinity. Time to sell my @ProcterGamble stock? Why don't they sell soap-not their soap box?
— Gov. Mike Huckabee (@GovMikeHuckabee) January 15, 2019
On YouTube, Gillette’s official account was even tricked into liking and responding to a mocking comment which declared, “My wife’s son loved this. Thank you!”
The official Gillette YouTube channel liked a comment on their recent unpopular video saying, "My wife’s son loved this. Thank you!" pic.twitter.com/WgbW75BkNi
— Charlie Nash (@MrNashington) January 14, 2019
“Happy to hear he enjoyed it!” responded Gillette.
Gillette’s parent company P&G has previously engaged in left-wing activism, and in 2017, the company joined Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg’s campaign to raise awareness about the “gender pay gap,” by offering rebates to women.
“Women on average are paid 20% less than men — and when you look at the data by race and ethnicity, it is even worse: black women are paid 37% less, and Hispanic women are paid 46% less,” claim P&G on their website. “To raise awareness about the gender pay gap, P&G is offering a 20% rebate via pre-paid card on $50 worth of P&G products.”