"He was trying to cut his penis off" - kids question shaving ad - but ok by ASB

By Alison Lowe | 29 October 2015

A Shaver Shop ad showing a man using a barrage of heavy duty machinery to trim his pubic hair did not breach the Advertisers Code of Ethics.

The ASB considered and dismissed complaints against the ad, in which a man is seen kissing a woman before seemingly getting inspired to engage in a spot of male grooming.

A sighting of a bushy plant in the bedroom appears to provoke the man to rush to the bathroom to quickly attempt to trim his nether regions before an implied, impending sexual encounter.

Grasping around for whatever he can find, the man picks up a variety of appliances, including a pair of shears and a blow torch, before finally finding a Remington Man Trim. A male voiceover says it's “the right tool for the right job”, before a close-up of the product is shown.

The ad provoked complaints about its alleged sexual content and concerns about health and safety issues.

One complainant, a mother, said that she was concerned about the “sexual implications” of the ad and the man's “inappropriate sexual actions".

She further alleged that the ad could encourage “small or bored children to take to themselves with shears or torches.”

“In the advertisement it appears that he is endangering his penis, not his pubic hair ... My primary school children were watching and asking questions about why he was trying to cut his penis off,” she said.

The ad was shown on Channel Seven during various AFL matches.

Shaver Shop responded that the ad was rated PG and fell within the relevant guidelines.

“We are sincerely sorry for any offence caused by the advertisement, however we have followed all advertising classification requirements and as such are within the required rules,” it added.

Dismissing the complaints, the ASB said nothing beyond an “initial kiss” is seen in the first scene of the ad, the man's genital region is not in fact shown and it is “not inappropriate for the advertisement to make reference to the pubic region".

Responding to the health and safety fears raised, the ASB added: “Most reasonable members of the community would be aware that using garden shears or a blow torch near any part of their body would be dangerous.”

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