Scandalous. Controversial. Provoking. With the taboos of homosexuality finally slipping away it seems like the advertising world is trying to flaunt the issue as much as they can. Gone are the straight lace old fashioned views of sexuality in advertising and now, progressively more campaigns are featuring a cheeky kiss between couples of the same sex.
In 1994 Diesel set the mark for homo-eroticism in advertising, with David Lachapelle shooting ‘This Navy Gay Kiss’. Starring former couple Bob and Rod Jackson-Paris the controversial image was featured in Interview and a small selection of other fashion magazines…and was an absolute hit in the gay press.
In 2010 the Armani Exchange launched a new Valentine’s Day campaign ‘Share the Love’ which exhibits a range of heterosexual couples alongside same sex couples. With some people still living in the dark ages on this subject, naturally some people are going to have a massive issue…introducing the American Family Association’s One Million Moms group! They appear to be unable to accept equality and blasted the campaign…’Malls where teens hang out, have retailers whose window displays POISON our children!’
Bruce Weber Abercrombie and Fitch photographer shot a campaign in 2010 that involved two men, one kissing the other on the forehead. The edgy nudity portrays the brand as controversial and the sexualised nature of the campaigns is often the main appeal of the advertisements. Weber also produced a series of videos, one video ‘Other sports require one ball. Wrestling requires two.’ Caused mass outrage! Take a peek at it below.
The latest in a long line of emerging same sex advertising is the Urban Outfitters April 2012 catalogue, where two model-esque women are kissing in a face holding embrace. Of course there was going to be some outrage, but homophobic group One Million Moms is now targeting the retailer because the brand dared to show two women kissing! They posted a warning on their Facebook page urging members to unsubscribe from the mailing list and describing the catalogue content as offensive and inappropriate for the brands target consumer.
It is about time we saw same sex relationships as a way of life, not as a threat, what do you think?