“Blow in her face and she’ll follow you anywhere”
Cigarette advertising has been around since 1700’s, and they are commonly targeted as a controversial topic of the media. In this example poster, a man is holding a Tipalet cigarette in his hand and blowing the smoke out onto someone in front of him. That someone in front of him is a woman who looks as if she is ready and eager to be with this man. The emphasis of this poster presents us with two protruding problems: Over glorifying of smoking and the stereotyping of women. First of all, the man in the poster can be defined as masculine as his eye brows are dark, his forehead is prominent and he has facial features that define him as a good-looking man. On the other side, the woman also has features that makes her a feminine and an attractive woman. She is wearing a tight white top, and she also has a look on her face where she looks pleasured by his company and is eager to be with this man. Therefore, this poster is sending out subliminal messages to the consumers that “if you smoke, you will be as cool and handsome as this man, and not only that, you also get an attractive girl”. The slogan “blow in her face and she’ll follow you anywhere” adds to that message as well. This is a perfect example of how advertisements and the media over glorify smoking and making it seem “cool”. The second problem I will address is that the stereotyping of women. In this poster, the woman is eager and ready to “follow” him just because he is smoking. There is an underlying assumption that women are easily seducible and are attracted to men who are willing to seduce women.
“I smoke and I feel cool …even though I have no idea what I’m doing”
“If you’re cool, I’ll follow you anywhere even though I don’t know you”
Since culture jams are focused on revealing and exposing assumptions that exist in our society and culture, I aimed to reveal the over glorification of the branded environment we live in. First, I wanted to expose the underlying assumption that smoking the Tipalet cigarette is being “cool”. The first change I made to the poster was to insert a phrase for the man, directly stating the subliminal message present which is “I smoke and I feel cool”. By doing this I directly brought the message on the surface which was originally embedded in the poster so that consumers can read the message instead of implying it. Directly reading the messages compared to receiving subliminal messages, the statement made by the man sounds awfully illogical. Moreover, I added the second part which was “…even though I have no idea what I’m doing”. This was to criticize that not all smokers are “cool”. Moreover, by revealing the lack of logic in this statement, it may also give the consumers the ability to critically think what society defines as “cool” and challenge the idea of “cool”. Secondly, I added a statement for the woman as well. She is saying that “If you’re cool, I’ll follow you anywhere even though I don’t know you”. This was also an embedded message in the poster that was brought to surface. I wanted to highlight the stereotyping of women that women would go for attractive and cool guys and thus would do anything for them (ex. offering sex). This statement by the woman also makes her sound illogical and would make the consumers challenge the idea that if this woman should really be fantasizing the man in the poster. In all, my culture jam was directed to bring out the messages that was implied by the poster and to also challenge the message that was embedded into the poster. Therefore, my project was done to raise awareness and encourage personal freedom of consumption.