Benetton, known for their ‘risque’ adverts, have taken the Metrosexual Bull by its horns with their latest social justice campaign. These posters of world leaders kissing are quite striking. Maybe not for the homoerotics so much as the shock of seeing people often at war, in such intimate poses. And indeed, the message of the ads, apart from ‘buy our jumpers’! is UNHATE.
Mark Simpson has alerted us to the fact that men’s ‘desire to be desired’ these days often extends to each other, so in one sense the pictures are just depicting social change. It is not just university students who are ‘metrosmooching’.
I found the image of the Pope and an Egyptian leader the most arresting, partly due to the apparent passion of their embrace, with the Egyptian’s hand holding the Pope by his neck. But also because their religions both remain resolutely against ‘homosexuality’ on paper, at least.
Whereas seeing metrosexual Obama in a clinch with another man just seems normal. Simpson has of course told us clearly how the ‘Obama Model’ is the template for contemporary metrosexual politicians.
There is one woman in the mix – Angela Merkel. But she is awkwardly kissing Sarkozy in a photo that could actually be a real record of a political tryst, and so is less interesting than the others.
There is a video that goes with the ‘UnHate’ campaign, but I found that a little boring. Maybe I have just seen it all before. If companies want to really shock in these uber metrosexy times, they might have to try a bit harder than this.
Update: Thanks to Heseriarch for pointing out the influence of the b and w Brezhnev/Honneker photo I have now included. I don’t know the circumstances of that particular pre-metro smooch I am going to read up on it!
Oh, Here he is with a post of his own: http://heresycorner.blogspot.com/2011/11/world-leader-porn.html