You may have read about the controversy surrounding Draftcb Chicago’s new Joe Boxer spot for Kmart, “Show Your Joe.” If you actually watch the spot (featured above) and have any sense, you may wonder what all the fuss is about. Kmart, of course, is no stranger to controversial advertising: a recent Kmart spot featured Satan and Genghis Khan, and their “Ship My Pants” spot is still our favorite of the bunch.
“Show Your Joe” opens with a group of tuxedo-wearing men behind a curtain, ringing bells. After a few seconds the curtain is whisked away to reveal the men clad in only boxer shorts from the waist down, and they begin playing “Jingle Bells” by shaking their hips. Presumably the, uh, bells, are tucked away somewhere in those boxers. The men perform the chorus of the song…and that’s it. To be clear: there’s nothing all that risque about the execution — the camera is panned way out and these dudes are in boxers, okay? No junk visible. Repeat: no junk visible.
The holiday effort is a little juvenile perhaps, but offensive? Hardly. The most offensive thing about it may be that it’s not all that funny. Either the cries to arms are coming from those who feel this ad violates the “sanctity of Christmas” (you can see these people riding around in cars with “Put the Christ back in Christmas” bumper stickers and complaining about government handouts), or they are the typically hypocritical complaints that arise from anything remotely provocative associated with male body parts. Overtly sexualizing women in every single women’s underwear ad ever? That’s okay. Suggesting that a group of guys are playing “Jingle Bells” with parts tucked away in their boxers, away from view? Congratulations, you’ve just awakened the seven horses of the apocalypse.
Kmart has reportedly refused to pull the ad, despite a long list of complaints on their Facebook page (although a quick glance at the page while writing this turned up at least as many comments supporting the ad). Good for them. If anything, the controversy will just call more attention to the spot, Kmart and Joe Boxer. Let us know what you think about the so-called controversy surrounding “Show Your Joe” in the comments section. Credits after the jump. Read more