Gillette has a problem with men, and now consumers have a problem with Gillette
In the last few days, the tables have been turned on Gillette, the world’s most famous name in razors. The company has been getting a very close shave from its customers. There isn’t a styptic pen in the world big enough to stanch the blood flowing from the myriad nicks they’re suffering as punishment for a short film ad they thought would capitalize on the #MeToo zeitgeist to good corporate effect. Until it went viral and got a gazilllion thumbs down.
The film, entitled “The Best Men Can Be” (a play on Gillette’s tagline, “The Best Men Can Get”), purports to address the problem of toxic masculinity. It opens with scenes of male misbehaviours: bullying, group wildness, paternalism and sexual predation. Then there is a shot of two boys fighting, with adult men—a lineup of men behind barbecues—watching and shrugging it off as “Boys will be boys.” Message: Most men consider negative male behaviour as normal and nothing to concern themselves with. Then we see a montage of TV news clips about sexual misconduct, and men watching with uneasy looks on their faces. Watching, I’m thinking, ‘Sure glad I’m not a man! Sure glad I am a member of a sex that is good!’