Gillette uses iconic catchphrase to take on toxic masculinity

NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Wednesday, 16 January 2019, 2:19PM

Gillette has flipped the script on their iconic catchphrase, "The best a man can get," by producing an ad that addresses the #MeToo movement.

The razor company, which is owned by Proctor & Gamble, has put together an inspiring advertisement about toxic masculinity.

The "short film" called We Believe: The Best Men Can Be opens with news reports on bullying, #MeToo and toxic masculinity - the narrator finally asking: "Is this the best a man can get?"

"We can't hide from it," the narrator says. "It has been going on far too long. We can't laugh it off, making the same old excuses."

The video then shows a montage of sexual harassment and boys misbehaving.

It even features a line of men standing in front of barbecues, excusing themselves by saying "Boys will be boys," until the narrator declares, "something finally changed and there will be no going back."

Eventually, it shows men stepping up to act appropriately in various situations, ranging from interacting with women, to bullying, to physical confrontations.

"To say the right thing, to act the right way. Some already are, in ways big and small. But some is not enough because the boys watching today will be the men of tomorrow," the narrator says.

"It's time we acknowledge that brands, like ours, play a role in influencing culture," Gillette said in a statement. "And as a company that encourages men to be their best, we have a responsibility to make sure we are promoting positive, attainable, inclusive and healthy versions of what it means to be a man.

"From today on, we pledge to actively challenge the stereotypes and expectations of what it means to be a man everywhere you see Gillette. In the ads we run, the images we publish to social media, the words we choose, and so much more."

"As part of The Best Men Can Be campaign, Gillette is committing to donate $1 million per year for the next three years to non-profit organisations executing programmes in the United States designed to inspire, educate and help men of all ages achieve their personal 'best' and become role models for the next generation."

Gillette has set up a website on countering toxic masculinity that is also driving contributions to the Boys and Girls Club of America.


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