By Sallie Rose Hollis
An addition to my Tasteless TV Commercial file: the Lume deodorant ads.
Call me a prude or a pedant or a party pooper, but I feel as if I’m being attacked by a rash of distasteful assaults. I’m wondering if any of my readers who watch network TV might jump on the I’ve-had-enough-of-it bandwagon with me
The last time I talked to you about TV commercials, I was dissing the ad that advocated kicking pain in the Aspercreme. (Get it?) I wasn’t a fan of this particular double entendre, and as I said at the time, I “wondered about the use in national advertising of what is often considered either vulgar slang or an impolite informality.”
These often-aired Lume ads don’t use double entendres, though. They just use words that I’ve never heard – and actually never want to hear – in a commercial.
Things like “underboobs.” And “butt cheeks.” Not to mention “butt cracks.” And “vulva.”
Plus, labels concerning the human body that I’d never encountered before: “stink level,” “odor score” and “average crotch.” Hmmm. I didn’t know some of these things could be rated.
So if you’re not a network TV watcher, let me fill you in.
Lume is, according to a condensed version of its own PR, “a whole body deodorant for MORE than just your armpits … Based in science, Lume stops odor BEFORE it starts. It is clinically proven to block body odor all day and continues to control B.O. for 72 hours.”
Note that “Lume” sports a macron – a diacritical mark – over the e, which makes the pronunciation of “Lume” sound a lot like “looney.” (I didn’t make that up, but I really like it. I got it from the article “How to Body-Shame and Make Million$$$” on ihatehouseguests.com, which has the subtitle “Rants, Raves, and Occasional Obfuscations.”)
In all fairness, a perusal of Lume videos on YouTube does provide some semblance of creativity in certain offerings, such as “Lume: Live Elegantly: Deodorant Musical” and “Lume Presents: A Deodorant Day Prince.”
Coincidentally, I just found out that the actress talking and singing in a French accent in “Deodorant Musical” was enough to get one of my friends to try the product, and she’s now enamored with it and has even gotten some of her other friends to start using it. So, color me halfway convinced that both the product and the ads might possibly have an upside – even though the “Deodorant Musical” star also sings of making “your hoo-ha smell ooh-la-la.”
That’s more than enough to make me agree with the “I Hate Houseguests” author. She subscribes to the theory that a vast number of commercials are stupid, and nothing is private anymore.
Other commercials illustrate that as well. Think:
– The Charmin toilet tissue commercial in which a little red cartoon bear prances and dances while proclaiming that “my hinny is clean.”
– The “Girls Don’t Poop – PooPourri.com” YouTube ad (although it actually IS funny).
– And the Garden of Life probiotic ad in which “poop” or derivatives such as “poop-splaining” are mentioned 19 times in 60 seconds.
OK, I realize that these three examples concern one particular bodily function, but for illustrative purposes, I think they prove my point. I also realize that we’ve been exposed to ads for laxatives and such for years, so it’s not the actual subject of the ad that I’m talking about. It’s the approach. Maybe it’s time we let advertisers know that we, as human beings, are asking for respect regarding our dignity and for advertisements that don’t resort to cheap jokes and crude langu