The decision exposes a double standard.
Over the past few years, Carl’s Jr. has released commercials featuring scantily clad women gyrating on cars, playing beach volleyball, and walking naked through a fair, all in the name of selling burgers. Every time a Victoria’s Secret sale comes around, the networks have no problem showing models prancing around some European setting in skimpy lingerie. But recently ABC and NBC, upholding a sizeist double standard, said no thanks to a Lane Bryant commercial featuring plus-size models in lingerie.
The spot features models Ashley Graham, Precious Lee, and Tara Lynn wearing Lane Bryant clothing, showing a lot of skin, and presenting an empowering message to women. “This body is made for proving them wrong,” Lee says in the commercial. The ad ends by asking women, “What’s your body made for?” and tells them to answer the question using #ThisBody on social media.
TMZ speculated that it was the women’s size, not the nudity that led networks to reject the ad. NBC reportedly asked Lane Bryant to make a “minor edit to comply with broadcast indecency guidelines,” which it refused. “It’s disheartening. This campaign’s intent and purpose was to create beautiful imagery celebrating fashion, women, their bodies, and what they can do with them, and to share it on television where all women could see it,” Brian Beitler, Lane Bryant’s chief marketing officer, told Refinery29. “Based on the release of the ad in our social channels, women seem to universally agree that the ad is both beautiful and appropriate.”
Although the commercial was effectively banned by two major networks, Lane Bryant is standing behind its campaign and has decided to share the commercial in its entirety via social media instead. Lane Bryant’s Facebook page proudly proclaims, “The networks didn’t want you to see this. But we do. Share. Tag. Show everyone what #ThisBody’s made for.”
You can support Lane Bryant’s campaign by using #ThisBody on social media.