Daily irritations this week

// 26 July 2008

The following are the latest entries in the “little things that bug me on a daily basis on the London Underground” files:

Item 1, the adverts for V Water. They all show a figure in profile drinking the water with a heading depending on what type it is. Has anyone else noticed that the ‘female’ figure is headed “GORGEOUS” and the ‘male’ one “LIVELY”? Unfortunately I couldn’t get a picture of the ones on the Tube, but here’s an example that I saw in the London Paper, headed “PURE”. I wonder whether they have any other gendered ones?

Women! Never forget that you are supposed to be “Gorgeous”!


Item 2, the adverts for Groupsave – a train company’s special offer for groups of four or more travelling together. There are two of these – one exhorting us to, and I quote, “Groupsave the girls” by taking them on a trip to a new town. The ad shows four women – sorry, girls! – shopping. The other shows four guys walking along the beach eating ice-creams and says something like “Groupsave your mates to the beach” (or words to that effect).

Women! Never forget that you are supposed to enjoy shopping at all times and the only reason you would ever leave your home town is to shop, shop, shop!

Item 3: The London Lite (for those outside of London this is an appalling free rag that is physically thrust at you by street vendors turning your daily walk to the office an obstacle course*). The other day I spotted this advert in it.

What an amazing way to sell TVs!

Yes, Women! Never forget your bodies will be plastered on any totally unrelated item to sell sell sell!

dodgy advert 1.JPGDodgy advert 2.JPG

(*I know it’s not the street distributors fault. They’re only trying to make a living like everyone else.)

Comments From You

chem_fem // Posted 26 July 2008 at 9:51 pm

4- McCoys ‘Man’ crisps advert:


Sian // Posted 27 July 2008 at 12:10 pm

It’s awful the way one can’t simply make a short journey without getting justifiably wound-up about these things. However in Liverpool all the adverts inside buses are about bank loans, loan sharks and benefit fraud so I am saved from the woman stuff in comparison with the above.

The worst ad I saw recently was in Oslo-it was for a sofa, a woman was sat on it, and the caption said (in English for some reason) “Happy Wife, Happy Life”…

tracey heynes // Posted 29 July 2008 at 1:32 pm

Yes,Catherine Redfern,you are so right! How little seems to have changed since the 70’s! Switzerland,where I live,is bad enough – I’ve seen TVs advertised in this way here….and there isn’t even a picture of a TV or a screen,just the woman(top half)in a bra and the name of the company underneath with it’s slogan!! Who needs to employ clever advertising people with creativity?I’m surprised to hear that the UK is at the same Neanderthal level though.

Years ago,feminists used to graffiti their protests over these bilboards – often wittily phrased.Maybe it’s time to get out the spray cans again!!

Alicia // Posted 29 July 2008 at 9:49 pm

I was looking at the groupsave ad on the train today – the one for men – and while I haven’t seen the one for women I found the men’s version quite refreshing. 4 men, shown eating icecream, not drinking alcohol, being outdoors and enjoying each other’s company without a sporting event, naked woman or barbecue to bind them. Hang on – one of them is wearing a pink tshirt and that might be Brighton… So clearly they are gay.

Levantate // Posted 30 July 2008 at 10:20 am

I just noticed the Groupsave one today and it’s *incredibly* irritating. It’s mindboggling that the advertisers think the only reason for women to leave London is to shop.

Hannah // Posted 1 September 2008 at 12:02 pm

the media simply uses stereotypical representations of women. it’s impossible for an image to portray every individual. It sells the product to appeal to the demographic in which case the majority of women travelling with group save will most likely be travelling to london to shop.

as for the tv advert men are the sole consumers of wide screen tv’s and if half naked women are going shift the product then that is what the advertisers are going to use.

i’m simply presenting the other side of the argument. i’m a medi student have really enjoyed reading your posts.

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