levi’s goes both ways.

Rome wasn’t built in a day. Even though this spot doesn’t take as brave or inclusive a stance as homo-positive advertising from Ikea or even Guiness, it’s at least one step closer to the front of the bus.

Last year Levi’s produced two versions of “Change”, one in which the standard male hottie encounters the expected female hottie and another where he bats his freshly denim-clad eyes at… another dude! One of the things I like about this spot is that instead of creating two separate spots – one with a more stereotypically “gay” looking couple and another with a hetero one – it uses the exact same footage of the main hero guy and just gives two separate endings. While this is admittedly kind of bisexual and played-out metrosexual, and it could even be argued that this sort of main-streaming dilutes the point of the message, I think it strengthens it. Though clearly not pushing anything as scandalous as leading the two gents to hold hands, at least they look lustily at each other.

Here’s the hetero version (which played on mainstream networks):

And here’s the homo version (which, disappointingly, only aired on the gay US network Logo):

(Agency: BBH New York)

I would have been really impressed if they’d had the balls to air this during the Super Bowl or WWF or something, though I’m hardly shocked that they only played it on the gay channel. I’m also not naïve enough to think this was done with any real idea of diversity – savvy companies are beginning to realize that gays and lesbians are affluent, like to buy shit, and are chronically under-marketed to. Any kind of gay advertising by a company this large is a move for dollars first. If by it’s very existence the ads push forward awareness or advancement of homosexual rights, it’s just a happy by-product.


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Comments

  1. Reminds me of some of the D&G adverts.

  2. keltic says:

    the good news is that I saw that ad last week on cable here in SW-PA, Bravo network, I believe. the bad news is that my cable company doesn’t even offer LOGO.

    as far as the ad is concerned, I would have liked them to hold hands as they walked away, but that’s just me. I’m sure the message is there for all of America to see, even if it is subtle. and I think you’re right, maybe that’s the way it should be, subtle, natural, and part of life.

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