He Deodorants has rolled out a new ad film that takes on sexist advertising featuring women. The film has been conceptualised be Leo Burnett and features comedian and actor Vir Das.
The film takes a stand against meaningless objectification of women in ads and launches He's new variant 'Respect'.
It opens with Das aping a mango juice ad film, as he 'sensually' plays with a mango. The director urges him to make a more sexy expression. Das says 'Okay' and tries to, but looks at the mango realising 'this is just odd'. The film shifts to another set where an ad for a motorbike is being shot. Das appears again, in a pair of denims and T-shirt, perched on the pillion of the bike, He responds to the first character saying if he thought that was odd, 'What do you call this?', while shaking his rear. Yet another stereotype of advertising is portrayed by another Das in a bathtub, 'taking care of his komal twacha' (soft skin) as a camera pans his body. At a beach, Das is in a women's beach robe licking an ice cream stick, wondering aloud that 'This is supposed to sell a lot of ice-cream'. Back on the bike, Das, with his legs up on the handlebar, says, 'Bike sales go up if I put my legs like this'. Dressed like an angel, yet another version of Das says, 'I fell from heaven for deo'. Before stepping into reality, Das sarcastically notes that 'it's a good thing' women don't have to what he just did. That way they never have to feel 'uncomfortable, awkward, objectified, pointless.'
He goes on to underline that one doesn't have to objectify women to sell a product, and adds, "So, it's refreshing to see a deodorant brand like He, doing the opposite." He introduces He Respect perfumed deos, with the promise that 'The proceeds of the profits from sale of He Respect is aimed to support the welfare of women.'
The film was published online on 13 May 2016.