Confusing Advertisements


On the T this morning, I was surrounded by advertisements for Axe body spray, two of which I understood and one of which I didn’t. All of the ads had the tag line “The New Longer Lasting Axe effect.” The woman sitting next to me was equally perplexed about the ads and we started up a conversation about them. Mostly we discussed how terrible they were.
One of the ads that I understood was a dirty couch with a clean spot where someone had clearly been sitting. Okay, so the effect of the body spray is so great that places you sit are cleaner and prettier. That one makes sense to me. The other ad that I understood, though found mildly offense, was the doorway to an apartment with one of the “Take a Number” machines that you see at the butcher’s. Okay, so the stuff is so great that women will be lining up outside your door. I get it — I’m a little put off and offended by the whole meat market analogy, but at least I understand it.
Now, the ad that neither I nor my fellow T-rider understood was the one in the bedroom. It consisted of an approximately queen-sized bed with white sheets and hundreds of cups on the nightstand next to it. The cups may or may not be filled with water — we couldn’t decide. Either way, exactly what is this ad supposed to be saying? That their body spray makes you really thirsty? That it takes that much water to wash the stuff off?
Whatever the message, we remained unconvinced that “Axe body spray” is anything more than your average deodorant. And we certainly weren’t keen on it relegating women to a number.


7 responses

  1. Silly. It means that you’ll have so much sex you’ll be easily dehydrated. Obviously.
    …boy, I gotta get me somma dat stuff.

  2. That ad is on a billboard on top of the building where I work in Mission Hill . . . I puzzled over it, too. When I described it to a friend, he said, “Clearly the cups are jello shots!” Then again, he was drunk and later had no memory of the thought process that led to that.

  3. I finally got that the cup setup is what you find at marathons, where runners grab a cup and drink it or dump it on their heads.
    HOWEVER, looking more closely, I saw that there are TWO pairs of nearly identical black workboots at the foot of the bed and “The Diary of Anais Nin” on the windowsill above the bed. What do you guys make of that if anything? Do you see a same-sex slant in this ad?
    As with everyone else, I hate the fact that I’m even devoting this much thought to such a dumb ad.

  4. But, only one side of the bed looks slept in and none of the cups have been used. Plus, there are clearly keys on the ledge above the bed, indicating that the person is still at home. This is such a confusing ad and have been wondering about it for months. Each time I see it, I get more frustrated about it. I just don’t get it.

  5. hey,
    do you guys have a link where i can see this advertisement. Im doing a project in school about confusing advertisements and it would be really helpful if i could get the link to that ad.