Volkswagen, We Need to Talk

GoldieBlox, meet Volkswagen.  I think you have a lot to talk about.  Specifically, Volkswagen, don’t speak.  Listen.  You see, GoldieBlox is a toy company that markets engineering toys to little girls.  It asks them to summon their inner engineer and not their inner princess.  As a company, it takes seriously the intellects and aspirations of little girls and encourages them to grow up to be scientists or engineers or just full human beings with brains.

GoldieBlox won Intuit’s small business competition and secured the opportunity to air their celebration of young girls’ potential during the Super Bowl, an evening that is usually dedicated to demeaning and degrading images of women (yes, I’m talking to you, GoDaddy).  Their ad showed little girls collecting all of their sickly pink toys and launching them off into space in a rocket they built themselves.  “So come on ditch your toys… girls build like all the boys” plays in the background to the tune of Quiet Riot’s “Come on Feel the Noise.”

This is where you come in, Volkswagen. You see, you also aired an advertisement during the Super Bowl, and you are also interested in engineering.  Your farcical ad imagined that every time a Volkswagen reaches 100,000 miles an engineer gets his wings. Yes, somehow in 2014 you managed not to show any female engineers gaining their wings.

Wait, what do you say, Volkswagen.  You say that in your defense there was a female engineer in the ad.

I am glad you mentioned that because I was going to.  I assume you were referring to the lovely white coated be-speckled brunette in the elevator (we know she is smart because she is wearing glasses!!!).  Yes, the brunette who slaps the male engineer for what she deems to be inappropriate touching as a result of him sprouting his wings.

You see, that’s kind of the problem.  You think she counts.  But in your ad about engineers, your female engineer is still just a sexual object. You don’t take women seriously, which is foolish for many reasons, including the fact that we buy automobiles.

So, please, sit down.  Have a chat with GoldieBlox here.  They may be able to help you to see women as more than objects, and perhaps even hire a few.

When you’re done, GoldieBlox, I’d like to talk to you about visiting some schools.

One thought on “Volkswagen, We Need to Talk

  1. I saw that Volkswagon ad! (I say that with enthusiasm because I didn’t actually watch the Super Bowl yesterday, I just happened to catch one ad while chatting with my sister.) Though I thought it mildly comical the whole “wing envy” in the toilet stall thing – because I’m raunchy like that and allow myself to hold two opposing viewpoints (absolutely degrading and terrible that the overweight, frumpy guy have smaller wings, while the stereotypically attractive dude have big wings, because we know in real like that weight and dress have nothing to do with the size of a man’s – ahem – wings; but also chuckle because the look of disappointment on the small-winged guy was so brilliantly times and then the camera span to his wings being small, it was well-played, etc.). All that aside I was extremely disappointed that there were no women and mentioned it to my sister who doesn’t much about this sort of thing. But on point with this observation. On point. Volkswagon disappoints me.

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