Is widely accepted by society members as a set of beliefs, objects, and practices that are prominent in society at a particular time. Popular culture is heavily influenced by modern media. The collection of messages popularizing the popular culture from the media influences the lives of the individuals living in the society at that given time. These new norms created tend to last for longer periods of time until there are new trends from the popular culture. Thus, popular culture influences a person’s general attitude.
In the new Gillette advert, the company uses toxic masculinity in the current society to push its products to the masses. The advert calls for the male figures to try and stop what has now become popular culture. It seeks to stop male sexual assaults towards women, bulling young kids, and support the #METOO campaign. The advert has attracted mixed reviews from the public. However, the company has welcomed all the positive and negative comments and said it did the advert to start an argument and a discussion surrounding the toxic masculinity topic.
The idea of “toxic masculinity” is now deep-rooted and part of the popular culture. Toxic masculinity says that men are to be strong and unaffected by situations, both emotionally and physically. Men are recognized as problem solvers, and a problem generally hands men the opportunity to rethink a situation.
The advert is meant to show the targeted market that the Gillette Company is serious about negative norms that plague the popular culture context.
In this case, the company tries to identify with victims of toxic masculinity and urges the men who normalize this to try to change themselves and one another. The advert uses mainly youth in the short advert, as they try to target that market to boost their market share. Something else in the advert which not many people get to see and understand is the way the company is targeting male minors right now and try to help them identify with their products as the best of their kind so that when they grow up, they will remember and identify with the brand name easily. This part comes to life in the advert during the scene where the grown men are advised to behave in an appropriate manner for the sake of the young male kids who are idolizing them.
This kind of advertising is dangerous and toxic to the audience that receives it. A company like Gillette has been accused many times of ‘toxic masculinity’. Example, Gillette sells the female version of the male razor by 3 dollars more. The act of aligning itself to the #METOO campaign is also polarizing as its main aim is to promote its product to the female market. The idea of companies using popular culture and social differences to promote their products is a shameful act, and if left unchecked, popular culture will become heavily monetarized. The normal culture norms will be dictated by cooperates only influenced by their margins of profit.
There is a lot of prejudice oozing out during the entire Gillette advert. The advert emphasizes on the idea that most men do not condemn bad and unacceptable behaviour and/or toxic masculinity from other male counterparts. This concept is not followed by any statistic or study to prove it. It assumes there are no well-groomed male role models for young kids to look up to. No credit is given to the population of male role models in society. The advert is also bias on gender neutrality. It gives no fair trial to the male gender. It creates the assumption of all men are not honorable and practices toxic masculinity. This is noted in their repetition of the slogan ‘boys will be boys’ very many times in the small duration of the advert.
Common cultural norms affect the Gillette message, both in a negative and positive way. The advert is a result of a cooperate entity trying to capitalize and profit from the ever-changing norms of the society. A common norm and popular culture that has affected positively the message of the advert is the bullying. The advert has addressed that topic in a decent manner and revealed the stress the kid who is bullied undergoes through. Also affecting positively, the message of the advert is the media (social media to be precise). It has played a significant part in spreading the advert to people all across America and the entire globe. This has been a positive result for the company as it brings with its exposure to their brand. As discussed above, the media, which includes social media, is a heavy influence on popular culture.
The advert, however, has had its message negatively impacted by some common cultural norms. Feminism, a common norm, has conflicted with the message of the advert and feminist groups and alliances like the #METOO campaign has denounced the company`s use of its demands to social change as cooperate opportunism. Also, the advert has been affected by its supposedly stereotyping the male gender and giving the male gender a guilty verdict because of alleged toxic masculinity. The common cultural norm around this is that the male gender has some members as toxic masculine but not the entire male population in the society, the way the advert has tried to make it appear.
The message from this advert is a controversial topic. However, it is leaning more to a negative than a positive message. This is because the company has taken advantage of social issues and tried to make itself the center of the conversations, so as to popularise the products. The company also wants to use the message to try and shift the common cultural norms, and if it succeeds this once, it will try to change many times in the future. This will be dangerous for the society as cooperates can never be allowed to influence the popular culture, at least not directly.