Brad Pitt is the new ‘face’ of Chanel – a signature women’s perfume brand. The ad itself is nothing to write home about, and has a definite whiff of a ‘wanabee’ cool. It looks to me like it is emulating that famous Guinness one, also in Black and White with a man’s voice speaking. But the words, the words in the Guinness ad are a lot more memorable than this vague mumbling from Chanel.
Joanna Schroeder at the Good Men Project has identified why even though it is stylistically dull, this advert is worth commenting on.
‘I think, as Pitt explains with an emo gaze into nothingness, the world does turn, and we do turn with it. Which perhaps means that life as we know it is changing.
Is this Chanel’s way of saying that the idea of what is “masculine” is blurring with what is “feminine”? That a man may wish to wear a soft, thoughtful, delicate fragrance as opposed to Axe Body Spray, and that’s just fine? Or are they just using a hunk to hock expensive stuff to fangirls?
Either way, I think it’s an interesting choice to cast a man to sell ladies’ fragrances, and am very interested in how the market will react and in what (if any) way the costumer base of Chanel No. 5 may shift.’
Exactly. Now men are pin ups, and men use products as much as women, having a man advertise women’s perfume seems natural.
Though of course the macho metro-denying ’male grooming’ industry may disagree. Grooming bloggers such as Lee ‘Grooming Guru’ Kynaston are still desperately clinging onto gender difference and the important distinction between men’s ‘fragrance’ and women’s ‘perfume’, ‘male grooming’ and ‘women’s beauty’.
It’s all Greek to me. I don’t wear perfume, or fragrance. But I know metrosexuality when I see it. And for the sake of that blurring of gender lines that Schroeder mentions, I like Brad’s ad.