Target in firing line over Gok Wan 'bangers' campaign

By AdNews | 26 August 2013
Gok Wan will appear in a 12-month campaign for Target.

The star of Target's latest ad campaign, Gok Wan, has been the focus of homophobic attacks. He was also slammed by some consumers for his use of the term 'bangers' to describe women's breasts.

In the 'Style Journey' campaign, Wan tells viewers that their "bangers will never feel more loved" in the new range of Target bras. He also refers to women's breasts as "assets".

The Advertising Standards Bureau received 20 complaints about the TV ad, with most of them arguing it discriminated against women and used inappropriate language. But some even attacked his sexuality in their complaints.

One said: "It's an offence to any decent person to watch some queer guy advertising and blaspheming and using insulting descriptive words re [sic] a woman's body and to be prancing around half dressed guys."

Another said: "A female body is a beautiful thing, not to be cheapened by a poofter calling breasts "BANGERS"!!! I WAS BREAST FED, NOT BANGER FED! It’s an insult to sooooo many Aussie men and woman to see poofs on tv [sic] but you let it happen."

One argued he/she didn't like the use of "bangers" because women's breasts don't "bang in any form". "In Australia bangers are sausages. Our breasts are not sausages," the complainant said.

But Target didn't agree. "[We] strongly believe that a person’s sexuality is irrelevant to their worth as a person. Target makes no apology for using a gay man in its advertising and we do not believe that this should be grounds for upholding a complaint.

"The use of 'assets' is not derogatory but in Target’s view strongly supportive of women feeling good about themselves. Target does not view breasts as the only measure by which women should be valued."

The ad watchdog ruled that the language used in the ad wasn't inappropriate, didn't discriminate against women nor was overtly sexual, and dismissed the complaints.

What do you think of the ad? Do you find it offensive? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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