After finding many stereotypes and controversials in my last analysis, I want to dedicate this post to some famous advertisements.
Do you think we can find sexism and stereotypes there, too? Of course we can….and we will!


These ads and movie posters are not exceptions at all. As the marketing professors Robert Peterson and Roger Kerin found out, there are rather major trends towards more nudity and eroticism and many advertisements still present women as simple-minded and male-dependent. [2]

What we can find on all ads above is sexualizing combined with the intensive use of sexual innuendos although none of these ads promotes anything on a sexual basis.
Picking out the film poster of “Dirty Grandpa”, age rating 12, one can see obvious sexual associations and female objectification. Emphasis is placed on the woman’s butt, the rest of her body as well as her face are unimportant. Robert DeNiro is looking at the back of the woman and what Zac Efron holds in his hands doesn’t just vaguely look like a penis. The headline strengthens this impression by saying “They’re hitting the road. And everything on it.”

The “Joop Homme” advertisement tackles a similar route by showing an almost naked woman spreading her legs and again emphasizing her legs and butt. The movie poster of “Magic Mike XXL” (what could the “XXL” perhaps stand for?!) is interesting because it is one of the rare sexualized ads for women. Telling the story of a stripper, the poster highlights the genital area of Channing Tatum and even strengthens this with his gesture. The announcement “COMING” finally takes it to extremes.

Other advertisements bring in a more extreme way of sexualizing by including relations of dominance and suppression. In the following “Dolce & Gabbana” ad, a woman is pressed to the ground and surrounded by several men which reminds of a gang rape. After being published, the ad was critically discussed and finally forbidden.
Even food advertisements are full of sexualizings and objectifications like the “Burger King” ad impressively shows. It promotes the u-u-unbelievable length of the burger which is so unbelievable that the woman with her mouth wide open seems shocked. I think I don´t need to explain what the words “It’ll blow your mind away” resemble.


However, I don’t want to reduce the logic of gender based advertisements to a subject-object-relationship. Since advertisers are not stupid, they often try to reach a bigger target group by including “mixed signals”. One famous approach is called gay window advertising in which heterosexual men promoting products for men are portrayed in a way that could also attract homosexual men. In this case, advertisers walk the thin line between addressing homosexuals and “frightening” heterosexuals.



As you can see, sometimes there is more than sexualizing and objectification underneath the surface – but the emphasis is on “sometimes”. Overall, less changed considering the fact that the findings of Peterson and Roger are from 1977!




[1] = Pictures taken from, 19.03.2016 (Dirty Grandpa);×480.jpg, 19.3.2016 (American Apparel;, 19.03.2016 (Joop Homme);, 19.03.2016 (Magic Mike XXL)

[2] = Peterson, Robert A. & Kerin, Roger A. (1977): The Female Role in Advertisements: Some Experimental Evidence. In: Journal of Marketing, Vol. 41, No. 4, p. 59

[3] = Pictures taken from, 19.03.2016 (Burger King);, 19.03.2016 (Dolce & Gabbana)

[4] = Pictures taken from×588.jpg, 19.03.2016 (Beckham);, 19.03.2016