I'm just a fat gal with a blog and an opinion. Well, lots of opinions.

What Do You Want To See?


The other day when I posted about a certain deodorant ad campaign many mentioned what they thought upon viewing the image. Some of us guessed it’s implications. I am still considering it all, honestly, as I do feel those images are loaded. We’ve discussed at length what we don’t like to see in advertising. We have all lamented about what we hate to see and read and hear, but that got me thinking that we should discuss what we would  like to see. So many products are marketed to us or our gender or our age group, etc. I so rarely see anything I like let alone would tolerate. So what would you like to see…

In a deodorant ad for men? For women?
Shaving or hair removal products?
Weight loss ads?

I will tell you one thing, that new weight watchers commercial with Jennifer Hudson singing with her old fat self? It makes me a special kind of angry. The kind where I get all rage face-y and can’t articulate my exact thoughts. UGH! WHY?! But then I thought, well, what would I like to see?
I guess I’d like to see more information, more personal stories, more positive representations in general. I’d like to see people. Real people and not just singers and actors. I’d like a sense of realness and reality and not the kind that has sex tapes.

I’d like to see ads for senior citizens that don’t include a dog or a grandchild or that red pulsating light flashing over joints and lower backs to depict pain.

I’d like to see products marketed for their fine features and durability or sustainability. I’d like to see every car commercial from this day forward have the MPG rating in large print, at the top of the screen! I’d like to never see a prescription ad campaign ever again!

So…what would you like to see?

20 Comments to

“What Do You Want To See?”

  1. On December 28th, 2011 at 11:48 am Jeanette Says:

    Oh those ww ads have been firing me up to. If she believes in herself, why she go and sign up with that company? Ugh! Makes me want to hold my breath and turn purple. And all the other weightless ads too. I’d like to see ads that simply encourage us to move. Something like a bright sunny day and a woman with her dog calling a friend to joins them for a walk. Or spending time with our families, playing with the kids in the park, running and laughing. No more weight loss ads or prescription drug ads. I’d like to see old and young people hanging out together. Id like to see granny doing the new black eyes peas dance game on kinnect or whatever gaming system. I’d like to see parents teaching their kids to drive without being on their cell phones. I’d like to see public servants being recognized for their hard underpaid thankless work. I’d like to see more animal cruelty commercials cause even though they make me cringe I think they get people’s attention in a good way. I’d like to see beer and cocktail swilling gender bending women and men working it out on the dance floor or the tailgater.
    That’s all for now.

  2. On December 30th, 2011 at 11:01 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Jeanette: Can I just say that I would love to see fat people dancing on tv…and I don’t mean sweatin’ to the oldies! I don’t know that I’ve ever seen fats on tv dancing and enjoying themselves without a fitness element. Boo! I agree with all you’ve said here. Rock on!

  3. On December 28th, 2011 at 11:51 am TropicalChrome Says:

    In general, what I want to see is less of “use this and get laid” or “look how much better your life will be if you buy this” and more about what the product actually does and how it works. Like your MPG rating above – I don’t care how sexy the actor/actress hired to stand in front of the car is, I care what the specs are on the car.

    But apparently it’s the actor/actress that sells. Even though they’re not included.

    And yes, please, more commercials with older folks where they’re not parents or caretakers or ill or passive support for young people’s lives. You know, where they’re living their lives. Many years ago Disneyworld had a great commercial aimed at older folks, showing the fun they could have there *without* the kids. And please, how about some romantic commercials with older couples that don’t involve a certain class of pharmaceuticals?

    As for weight loss ads, I want to see their actual statistics in a large size font for a minimum of 5 seconds screen time at the start and end of their commercial. No more of this teensy weensy “results not typical” – show people just HOW not typical they are. I want them to print the actual price you’ll pay and what you get for that.

    And for makeup ads? I want disclosure if the photo has been photoshopped. I want to know if the picture they’re showing is actually what some real person’s skin (eyes, lips, hair, etc.) looks like when their product is used, or is what no real person actually looks like at any time.

    Hey, if you’re going to ask, ask for it all.

  4. On December 30th, 2011 at 11:02 am Not Blue at All Says:

    TropicalChrome: Yes! It seems more truth is just needed in general on the airwaves. I agree completely!

  5. On December 28th, 2011 at 12:10 pm Regina T Says:

    Where does one begin? For starters, I’d like to see disclaimers such as “results not typical” displayed prominently like are now required for credit card rates. I would like to see plus sized models advertising clothing. And I don’t mean just the lowest size, but a range of models in different sizes for the same item. And please include a side and rear view of the item while it’s actually on a person, not a hanger. Also, could they give the “actual” length, not just a “range” for most tops? Stating that the length gets longer as the size goes up doesn’t give me the info I need when trying to decide if a shirt (or pant) is going to fall where I want or need it to.

    I’d also like to see medical equipment such as MRI machines, X-ray tables, mammography machines, blood pressure cuffs and gowns accommodate larger sized people. Yes….I understand that it will be rare that one of these items will need to be used. But having that option available, in all facilities, allows ALL people to know that their medical needs can be met–which is an important part of their well being.

    I, also, would like to see more positive depictions of the elderly in the media. I have always felt our senior citizens are an under represented and under utilized resource…..and I’m only now in my 40s. The stereotypes about seniors are ridiculous.

    And I’m with you……if I never see another prescription drug commercial I’ll be happy. 🙂

    Didn’t mean to get ranty…..thx for the vent! 🙂

  6. On December 30th, 2011 at 11:04 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Regina: Rant and vent all you like here! This is what I love about all who read and comment on this blog. I find those two things to be very much about self-care or at the very least sanity savers! Ha-ha! I agree with you about all of it! I was considering buying my own medical gown or sewing one for when I do have insurance again.

  7. On December 28th, 2011 at 12:32 pm erylin Says:

    i want to see the real stats on weight loss….a big old star at the bottom of the screen that says results not typical…usual amount of weight loss on our diet in 6 months is 2 lbs. 80% of participants regain by year 2 despite reproting sticking to the program.

    of course we wont ever se that…why would they try to sell us weight loss stuff with a print that makes them admit it dont work.

  8. On December 30th, 2011 at 11:04 am Not Blue at All Says:

    erylin: More facts, more truths, bolder print, right at the top of the screen!!! I love it!

  9. On December 28th, 2011 at 1:38 pm Patsy Nevins Says:

    It’s more what I would like to STOP seeing. I would like to stop seeing diet ads entirely. I am SO DONE with the promotion of weight loss as the end all/be all of life, as attainable for anyone, & as necessary to be accepted as a human being.

    I would also love to see an end to all prescription medication ads. Most have more side effects than benefits, our society is over-medicalized, & we are lied to about how much many ‘numbers’ need to be controlled or how easy or even possible it is to control them, & most of the time, the ‘dire’ consequences of not taking this or that drug are greatly exaggerated.

  10. On December 30th, 2011 at 11:06 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Patsy: I agree. Those ads are awful and toxic. I cannot imagine having to grow up right now with the way our current media operates. It’s disgusting. I am grateful that kids at least have the internet and will hopefully be inspired by the current uprising of a more activism attitude the world over…but? I’m a bit of a realist and I know it’s unlikely for major shifts to occur. I’m hopeful though.

  11. On December 28th, 2011 at 3:38 pm nycivan Says:

    re that Jennifer Hudson ad…. It caught my interest because it came on during the x factor and I was really enjoying her singing… then her thins self came on to sing with her fat self and I still didn;t get it… i thought they were both beautiful… not until the WW logo came up did I realize what they were doing….I felt a sad pit in my stomach. anyway I am afraid to even think about what I would like to see as I think I have a decent grasp of how far away we are from this stuff going away…. 60 Billion dollars a year is not going to go without a fight and they have the money to not fight fair.

    I’d like to see an objective honest disclosure about the facts and the science that shows obesity to not be the evil villain and that 95% of folks that try to loose weight will gain more weight back and and hoest isclosure bout the harm of cycling….

  12. On December 30th, 2011 at 11:08 am Not Blue at All Says:

    nycivan: Perhaps if there were some new law passed, in the same vein as the one that was passed last year about ads not increasing in volume over programming. If there were a law passed that demanded the facts of any weight loss program, prescription drug, or any other product…if the facts had to be at the top of the screen in large print? I think we’d all be viewing them a bit differently. But I agree that the money is the power in this country. It will be a tough fight for sure.

  13. On December 28th, 2011 at 7:55 pm G Says:

    I don’t ever watch TV so I’m pretty insulated from advertising. This past week, though, I was traveling and wound up spending some time watching TV and advertising is uniformly horrible! It’s not a very practical position to take, but I think we’d all be better off with less exposure to manipulative ads trying to sell us things.

    It’s just lies all the way down.

  14. On December 30th, 2011 at 11:11 am Not Blue at All Says:

    G: I agree that just avoiding this type of advertising is a great way to save some sanity. But for me, I have found that when I insulate myself from it too much and come across or am suddenly faced with such things I am all the more shocked. I almost see it as a vaccine in a way. If I expose myself to it a little at a time then my system won’t get overloaded and may even become more immune all together. I admit to surrounding myself with awesome like-minded people and it’s when I step out of that magical circle that I realize how very different I live my life than most. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. It really is all lies in advertising.

  15. On December 29th, 2011 at 12:05 pm Patsy Nevins Says:

    I also watch little tv, but it takes very little to make me furious. And I know my young granddaughter is being exposed to too much shit aimed at making her hate herself & I wish that could be brought to an end.

    As a 62-year-old disabled but very active & involved fat woman, I too would like to see all of us represented, & represented as real, three dimensional human beings who bring as much to the world & our loved ones as do the young, the thin, the ‘beautiful’, etc.

  16. On December 29th, 2011 at 1:34 pm Emerald Says:

    I can never forget John Berger’s famous description of advertising: it steals your love of yourself as you are and sells it back to you for the price of the product. And stealing anyone’s self-esteem is, in my mind, unforgivable. Unless an ad exists simply to inform you about the product, like TropicalChrome says – and those ads are few and far between – it’s almost certainly trying to make you feel bad about yourself in some way. I also despair at the sheer amount of creativity and imagination that goes into some (to me) fairly pointless ads, and wonder what sort of world we could live in if that were devoted to something other than selling Stuff.

    That said…I’d like to see a greater variety of appearance, size, race, ability, age and other characteristics. Older people have already been mentioned, and we know that this is a very large demographic now, so it’d make monetary sense for companies to feature older people in more ads for different products. The same, of course, applies to fat people – the clothing industry is missing out on a vast amount of money by including us out of its market. And, it puzzles me that in the UK, where we have legal civil partnerships for same-sex couples, while the wedding industry has started to catch on to the ‘pink pound’, others have yet to follow suit – when, I wonder, in the throes right now of New Year furniture sales, are we going to see a gay couple picking a couch on our TV screens? Is that still too radical?

    I’d like to see the end, in particular, of two stereotypes that my husband refers to as Stupid Man and Aspirational Woman – often seen in an implied married or cohabiting state, usually in a scenario that involves him trying to do something, messing it up, and her doing it much more successfully using (insert name of product) – implication being ‘women can/must do everything because men can’t/won’t/shouldn’t be expected to’, which sucks in different ways for both parties.

    Also, I want to see Women. Of various sizes. Eating. Non-diet food. Unapologetically. Without any implication that the food is doing anything except giving them enjoyable nourishment. And without prominent views of the women’s bodies with the implication that eating this food and having that body are in any way connected. (The people who write copy for yogurt ads should be tied up in a dark room until they get this into their heads.)

  17. On December 30th, 2011 at 11:15 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Emerald: YES!!! Fat, gay, old, disabled, dancing, active, fun-loving people from all over the world! Why isn’t there more diversity on television in general? I grew up watching reruns of Good Times and What’s Happening and The Cosby Show…it seems that there is less and less of these wholesome, ethnically diverse, but still good fun sit-coms now days and that is sad. I want to see a push back about food morality, too! And yogurt ads? Ugh! That have to be the worst of the worst.

  18. On December 30th, 2011 at 10:12 am Alena Says:

    In my utopian dream world there would be no advertising at all. I think life would be so much better if everyone wasn’t trying to sell you something 24-7, but there’s no way to get away from ads even if you don’t watch TV. Our consumer culture also forces us into the role of advertisers. We package ourselves on social networking sites; appearance, we are led to believe, is paramount to identity (why else is it called facebook?)

    Instead of advertising I’d like to see an acceptance/encouragement of creative expression that has no monetary aspirations.

    The work of the billboard liberation front is pretty inspiring to that end:

  19. On December 30th, 2011 at 11:18 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Alena: YES! I love this! And you’re so right, it’s all about personal branding now days. This billboard liberation thing reminds me of some buildings in SF where furniture is glued to the outside or large swaths have been painted in bright colors. Just the simplicity of offering an alternative to the corporate marketing machine, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant is a delight to my eyes! I love street art and graffiti! I really gotta work out what I want to spread around and start making my own! Thank you for sharing this here. Fabulous!

  20. On January 3rd, 2012 at 12:57 am Kath Says:

    I am having a twitter rant at the moment about sanitary product advertising. Why is it that advertising aimed at women is always twee and silly, and aimed at men is always about power and status?

    Can’t we just have advertising that tells us the features/price of the products or services, without all the bullshit?

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