For this lab I chose to examine an Old Spice advertisement I found in Men’s Health magazine. The advertisement endorses Old Spice’s new scent, Fiji. The Fiji scent is offered as a body wash, deodorant, and antiperspirant; it is Old Spice’s newest scent and product line. Old Spice advertisements, physical or digital, are always interesting (and usually hilarious). The common theme in most of Old Spice’s recent ads seems to be the association of Old Spice products with extreme masculinity of some sort. If you watch any TV at all, you’ve probably seen commercials with an extremely muscular man doing anything from riding a horse, rowing a boat, crushing a small city under his feet, or yelling ridiculous things in a locker room or shower. Regardless of what the man in the commercial is doing, he is always holding an Old Spice product of some sort and talking/screaming about the everyday perks of using Old Spice.

This particular ad featured a shirtless, muscular, bearded black man staring into the camera, smirking and holding Old Spice Fiji deodorant and body wash in his left hand. The text at the bottom of the page reads, “Become one of the freshest smelling places on Earth”. The upper part of the man’s torso is covered in sand; his body is decorated to resemble Fiji. There is a small man sitting on his ear, fishing and pulling a huge shark out of the ocean on his right shoulder. There is an attractive woman sunbathing on the sand on his chest. There are three beach huts surrounded by palm trees sitting on his left shoulder. The sky behind him is blue, and there’s a volcano erupting out of the top of his head, just to list a few of the things going on in the picture. All of these items are sized as if he is a giant.

Needless to say, this ad caught my intention as soon as I flipped to it in the magazine. Like any other magazine, almost half of the pages in Men’s Health are occupied by advertisements. I had probably already flipped passed almost fifty ads, none of which had my attention for more than a couple seconds. However, when I came across the Old Spice Fiji ad I couldn’t help but stop and at least see what product they were promoting. This seems to be the reoccurring catch to most Old Spice ads; they’re all so ridiculous and unusual that if nothing else, they get your attention.

Obviously Old Spice’s target consumer is men, so it makes sense that they might pick Men’s Health magazine as a likely place to advertise. The ad took up one whole page, and was the only Old Spice advertisement in the magazine. The underlying message in this advertisement, which is usually the same is Old Spice’s others, is that using Old Spice is just the manly thing to do. One commercial even demonstrates how Old Spice deodorant can literally put hair on your chest. As a relatively avid TV watcher, and a moderate magazine reader, it seems clear to me that (from a male perspective) Old Spice is one of the most effective advertising companies in terms of what they advertise, how they advertise, and where they choose to advertise. My only disappointment following the examination of this advertisement, was that I was in Harris Teeter yesterday looking for new body wash and amongst all of the Old Spice products the Fiji scent was nowhere to be found!