Parker F. sent us a fun vintage ad that reminds us that chocolate wasn’t always seen as a woman’s indulgence. The ad below, for Fry’s Chocolate Cream (found at the BBC) features a man delightfully, and conspiriatorally, popping a chocolate, with the copy “Go on– spoil yourself!” The message (indulgence) is so familiar, but the subject (a man) less so.
I think, if the ad ran today, it’d likely feature a woman and, instead of reading “5 big pieces… for only 4¢,” it’d read “5 big pieces… for only 40 calories.”
Today, it seems that efforts to sell chocolate to men involve hypermasculinization, as in the recent Snickers advertisements featuring Mr. T., the linking of Easter candy with professional wrestling, and Yorkie’s “Not For Girls” candy bars.
UPDATE [from Gwen]: Oddly enough, I had planned to post this ad for Skinny Cow Truffle Bars, in which we’re told to “feel the love” because the ice cream bar is “loving you in that delicious 100 calorie way,” illustrating Lisa’s point nicely:
Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions, with Myra Marx Ferree. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.