Ads gone awesome: Look again. I'm on a horse.

Posted at 4:22 PM Feb 18, 2010

By Andrea Grimes

I think I speak for many, many people of many, many sexual orientations when I say: get in my bed, Isaiah Mustafa. Ladies and gentlemen, the man your man could smell like!

Behold, a masculinity commercial that doesn't do that irritating pity-us-you-selfish-stupid-women thing.

Why is this commercial so much better than the Super Bowl schlock from this year? Perhaps most of all because it is silly rather than shaming. Yes, The Man Your Man Could Smell Like still wants Men to smell like Men--and not Ladies--which is problematic, considering there's nothing actually wrong with a dude smelling like a "lady," whatever that means. But in goofily appealing to (presumably) hetero women, this seems relatively reasonable considering Old Spice has long been known as a dude-smell, and that surely some women might like their dudes to smell as such.

The commercial is also treating constructed gender stereotypes for both men and women with silliness--I mean, diamonds! And he's on a boat! And he's on a horse! Instead of valorizing some kind of wanky, false male ideal (see the Dockers Man-ifesto), Old Spice is closer to sending up the entire genre of gender-based marketing as a whole.

Want more Mustafa? You're welcome:

[Via Jez-ish]


Anonymous said:

Haha! I totally appreciate that commercial. Mustafa is a very pretty man. :)

DJRM said:


BorgQueen said:

LOL, my bf totally cought me drooling over this commercial the other day!

manobon said:

Really? It plays up male sexy-torso imagery, And stereotypes of women ("he'll never look as Good as me, but he can Smell like me"? "Here are some diamonds and tickets to that thing you wanted to go to, but I'm not interested in- you win!"), neither of which are good things. It might be "closer" to sending up those stereotypes, but that's pretty subjective.

I think you might only like it because you found it funny, and Mustafa is incredibly good looking- it would be like if someone said, "hey, you get me Old Spice, and I'll get you those Skecher Butt-shoes, so we can both get what we want- which is the image of an ideal person that isn't you."

Kiala said:

I love this commercial.

Andrea said:

Mainly I just like that manobon figured out why I liked something, because my little lady-brain was having trouble figuring that out on its own.

No joke, I found it funny. Because I don't find it offensive. For the reasons stated.

defenestrated said:

I want to just listen to a continuous loop of how he delivers the line "I'm on a horse." The thought of making it into a ringtone even crossed my mind.

Can't. stop. laughing.

defenestrated said:

@manobon, I really can't think of a more oversexualized body part than the male torso. That's why there are articles citing fake studies about how women benefit health-wise from staring at male torsos, and why, oh say, male heart-attack PSAs are filled with objectifying imagery about "saving the six packs!"

Oh wait. I was referring to an actual trope.

Hannah Harper said:

I love this commercial, especially when he kept repeating, "look at look at me", that got me laughing so hard.

Denise Bruce said:

I have recently started watching commercials for sheer entertainment. The creativity in some of the astounding. Could it be a gimmick to get me to watch rather than flipping channels?? Maybe. This commercial really caught my attention as I was looking away and then back again.

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