As a magazine enthusiast I've been witness to all manner of dubious images and advertisements. Some have been memorable, others laughable, some pathetic and a couple downright offensive. But never has anything stopped me in my tracks like the ad below, which features in a British magazine I was reading last night. Check it out:
Now, I find this ad particularly confronting. And the strength of my reaction has amazed me. I mean, how many photoshopped, sexualised images of teenage girls have I actually glossed over? Probably hundreds. But show me little boys tricked up like this and I react.
OK, so let's analyse this a bit. Did I stop and look at this page simply because it's pretty rare to actually see an image of a boy in a women's fashion magazine? Possibly. Could it be that the clothes the boys are wearing are very ... couture ... yet also very military, very Palestinian intifada and possibly a little industrial revolution. Edgy, to be sure.
Then there's the adult stance, the hair (a la Kate Hudson's kid) and ... maybe most confronting of all ... the menacing stares. Yes, it could be the stares that bother me. It's that Pommy "I'm dead hard, me" attitude that seems so entirely out of place on the under 10s.
But I wonder if I just thought this ad so incredible because I am the mother of a boy? Perhaps it's just some form of protective kneejerk.
I'd love to know what others make of this picture ... views, anyone?