Axe Grows Up

July 20, 2012 / Signed/Unsigned

By Alex Reeves

A typically juvenile brand matures into a shockingly poetic beast.

When a brand leaps into the unknown, willing to go against the lures of habit, the result is usually interesting. Axe’s new ad, Fear No Susan Glenn, is certainly interesting. Directed by the decorated Ringan Ledwidge of Rattling Stick, the commercial engulfs and enchants the viewer, presenting a world of romantic phantasm with genuine emotional depth. It’s got levitation, demons and an earthquake. Then there’s the small detail of Kiefer Sutherland starring in the work. This is not your average lads’ ad.

Product: Axe
Title: Fear No Susan Glenn
Production Company: Rattling Stick
Director: Ringan Ledwidge
Production Producer: Charlotte Arnold
Ad Agency: BBH New York
Creative Director: John Patroulis
Art Director: Nate Able
Copywriter: Peter Rosch
Agency Producer: Calleen Colburn
Editing Company: Work
Editor: Rich Orrick
Music Company: Woodwork Music
Sound Company: Lime
Post Production House: The Mill, New York

Axe, known as Lynx in Britain, has relied upon a well-known, well-established and feminist-goading message: wear this deodorant and women will flock to you like zombies. Sexy, obliging, mindless zombies. For years this has worked, pitching to the level of teenaged boys perceived to be ruled exclusively by their hormones.

But in creating this new campaign, BBH NY has stopped this old juggernaut in its tracks. They’ve given Axe’s audience the benefit of the doubt, choosing to assume teenaged boys are slightly more three-dimensional. Could it be that they think about things other than sex? Might they have hopes and dreams? Would it be insane to suggest they may even have emotions? This is madness.

Even for those of us who have been teenaged boys, the answers to these questions are uncertain, but Axe have shown incredible trust in bringing them into the debate. Almost every component in this new commercial is out of their comfort zone, systematically breaking down conventions that the industry has tacitly created.

Firstly, the copywriting is ambitious. Sutherland’s lamenting voiceover compares his high-school crush to a queen as he remembers how “in her shadow others became goblin-esque.” It’s wordy, to say the least. Apparently, the spotty hormone-machines have a soft spot for metaphorical abstraction now. A scary thought.

Then monogamy and romantic devotion are thrown into the mix. The camera’s focus remains on Susan throughout, never wandering to other girls. This must be pretty difficult with the unfeasibly high proportion of hotties a commercial set in a fantasy high school is bound to have.

As if focusing on one girl wasn’t enough sexual repression for teen Kiefer, she’s not giving him much to work with here. While beautiful, there’s not glimpse of cleavage, no tank tops and there are certainly no hotpants. She even rocks a bit of an indie tomboy look in one shot – jeans and a chequered shirt. Has the director been drinking with Germaine Greer or something?

Finally, it’s worth considering just how much of a downer the message of this film is. Of course, the obvious thread is that Kiefer and Susan could have been “a thing” if he’d used Axe. But the implicit narrative is that even this gruff alpha male has grown full of regret for not acting on his surprisingly wholesome desires. Jack Bauer didn’t have the stones to talk to a pretty girl. Now that’s sad.

But, speaking of stones, breaking so many taboos of the lads’ ad genre took some. Stepping away from stereotypes is always something that the media generally finds difficult, but the corporate nature of advertising means more is at stake there, so change comes slowly. Axe’s chips are down. Let’s see if they win this hand.

Comments (24)

  • Your blog is extremely good, excellent operate… www.yeezy350find.com
    turtutrt

    by shoes on 2017 07 13

  • The variations of the games from Windows 7 that came with Windows 10 are the outright pits
    I was distressed when all my Windows 7 Games disappeared after a Windows 10 upgrade - No matter what I tried to do absolutely nothing functioned http://mahjongfreegames.online/titans

    by rahu on 2017 09 01

  • I kind of liked the advertisement by Axe on this one. Though they’re mostly wrong, the buytopessay told me just how uncomfortable it makes adolescent boys who’re just starting wearing deodorants, and this seems like an interesting take on that.

    by knoxorr on 2017 12 06

  • the roof of the canvas was smashed raindrops rang. More than two in the middle of the night, I was asleep. fake hermes belt Suddenly, a loud noise woke me up. Seeing my bed tilted outwards,

    by dgwewe on 2018 01 16

  • by Donald J Jones on 2018 03 15

  • If you are don’t know where is all programs in windows 10 online then visit here and get online tutorial.

    by bruno99 on 2018 04 18

  • great and secured information is possible

    by click on 2018 04 27

  • In this area of the beak street bugle you can find the best profile in this zone and can check the best method for the axe grows up. Get the new idea about the http://www.au-resumesplanet.com/ Juvenile brand with the best option in this field.

    by shefi on 2018 04 30

  • Qui tempora laboris animi dolore eveniet quo accusantium paperwritingpro.com

    by Madaline Newton on 2018 06 01

  • The Dallas Cowboys are a professional American football team based in the Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex. The official site of the Dallas Cowboys 2018 Schedule. Team view of the schedules including links to tickets, broadcast channels, and printable views this site Dallas Cowboys vs Carolina Panthers .

    by Foysalahme Khan on 2018 06 23

  • The Packers jumped out to a fast 14-0 lead after Rodgers led an opening-drive touchdown and Glennon got strip-sacked on the Bears’ first play, setting up another Packers score. A lightning Bears vs Packers Game strike forced the game to be delayed 45 minutes, but it didn’t help the Bears find a spark on offense. A two-minute drill touchdown at the end of the half was the only time Chicago’s offense looked like a threat, at least until garbage time later on.

    by BearsGame on 2018 06 29

  • Thank you very much. Thank you for having us. I want to express my gratitude to everybody around the world watching us live for the first time ever holding a press conference on Facebook. We greatly appreciate the support, and today, as of 10:00 in the morning, tickets went on sale. They are going extremely well, extremely fast, and we are grateful to all the fans who can be watching live on September 15 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
    I want to thank Team Canelo. I want to thank Team GGG for making this fight once again for the fans. The fans got to witness an incredible, incredible fight the first time around, and we strongly believe that the second fight will be a continuation, round No. 13, of their first fight televised Golovkin vs Canelo live on HBO Pay-Per-View.

    by GGG Canelo on 2018 07 06

  • The Joshua vs Povetkin Boxing Live takes place on Saturday, 22 September at Wembley Stadium, London. When do Joshua vs Povetkin tickets go on sale and where to get them? Eddie Hearn confirmed at Wednesday’s press conference that pre-sale tickets to Matchroom Fight Pass and Club Wembley will go on sale on Monday 23 July at 9am and on general sale on Tuesday 24 July at 9am.

    by Seam Sayham on 2018 07 30

  • Interesting topic for a blog. I have been searching the Internet for fun and came upon your website.
    Fabulous post. Thanks a ton for sharing your knowledge!It is great to see that some people still
    put in an effort into managing their websites.I’ll be sure to check back again real soon.

    <a harf=“https://www.nflstreamslive.com/watch-pittsburgh-steelers-vs-philadelphia-eagles-live-stream/”>Steelers vs Eagles Live</a>
    <a

    by NFLSTREAMSLIVE on 2018 08 08

  • I kind of liked the advertisement by Axe on this one. Though they’re mostly wrong, the buytopessay told me just how uncomfortable it makes adolescent boys who’re just starting wearing deodorants, and this seems like an interesting take on that.
    Cowboys vs 49ers Live

    by NFL Streams Live on 2018 08 08

  • Your blog is extremely good, excellent operate…

    Cowboys vs 49ers Live Stream
    Watch Cowboys vs 49ers Live

    by NFL Streams Live on 2018 08 08

  • Canelo Álvarez vs. Gennady Golovkin II is an upcoming professional boxing rematch between Canelo Álvarez and Gennady Golovkin, to take place at T-Mobile Arena in Paradise, Nevada on September 15, 2018. The fight was originally to take place on May 5, 2018.
    The fight was originally to take place on May 5, 2018. However, in March 2018, two months prior to the fight, Álvarez tested positive for Clenbuterol, and was suspended by the Nevada Athletic Commission for six months. Álvarez formally withdrew from the fight, but renegotiated the rematch to occur in September after his suspension lapses.


    canelo vs ggg 2 live
    canelo vs ggg 2 live stream
    canelo vs ggg live

    by Canelo Álvarez vs. Gennady Golovkin II on 2018 08 17

  • Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov have the chance to settle their differences within the confines of a 750-square-foot cage in just six weeks’ time. UFC 229 News

    by Jonykham Jason on 2018 09 03

  • Thanks for sharing, you have a very nice information please keep sharing..! If you want to watch Ryder Cup game online without any cable connections. Visit here -  http://www.hoomet.com/blogs/368/3659/the-ryder-cup-and-that-other-tournament

    by Jack Ryder on 2018 09 13

  • Magnificent website. Plenty of helpful info here.
    I am sending it to a few buddies ans additionally sharing in delicious.
    And certainly, thanks for your effort!

    Bathurst 1000 Live Stream

    by autobathurst on 2018 09 15

Post a new comment