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Japan swimsuit teen's eel ad pulled over sexism claims

36 Comments

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It seems that a lot of commenters with male-sounding usernames and avatars are of the uniform opinion that this is not sexist at all. Any females out there care to chime in?

I'm female. I don't think it's particularly sexist (no more than all the other commercials we see of pretty young girls inviting the consumer to buy whatever it is they're selling). As I said before, it's sad and ghoulish. And probably the opposite of what Shibushi intended.

Still, if it reminds people of where their food comes from and edges a few more folk towards vegetarianism, I'm all in favour.

If the girl were replaced with a boy, what then? Any change in reaction?

Would turning a boy into kabayaki be any less ghoulish than grilling the girl? I don't think so.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Not sexist, but really really creepy. And yes, I was reminded of the girl who was kidnapped and held prisoner for 2 years.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

If the girl were replaced with a boy, what then? Any change in reaction? Just curious.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Looks like the PC BS brigade is invading Japan. The UK is finally starting to reject years of this PC clap trap that should never have been allowed to flourish in the first place.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

I will avoid the pitfalls of analyzing the semiotics of this commercial but instead just remain bewildered at the constant frittering away of considerable marketing budgets by people who have absolutely no marketing qualifications or experience.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I wouldn't say sexist, more pedophilic or uncomfortably sexual

3 ( +4 / -1 )

It seems that a lot of commenters with male-sounding usernames and avatars are of the uniform opinion that this is not sexist at all. Any females out there care to chime in?

Seems to me that a video in which a submissive, scantily clad young woman is ....uh raised (?) by some guy in a pool, kept scantily clad for a year for....uh, no reason.....and does nothing but cutesy stuff that is designed to appeal to guys watching it .....

....all to advertise the eel farming industry in some town in Kyushu?

Wait, why is this not sexist?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

activist use "political correctness" as a club to crush opposing freedom opinions and speech.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

“This makes me think of a girl who is being kidnapped and locked up…it’s the delusions of a pervert,” said one Twitter user.

Seems to me that the only person suffering from delusions of a pervert is the person who posted the above comment.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

It didn't appear sexist to me but it definitely appeared weird. As in "Look, a lovely person. Let's eat it." Personally, I'd love to see an eel do a hula hoop. Then, when the second "eel" appears in the pool, I'm thinking — uh oh, more food.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Um, sexism and cannibalism - if you think there are - aside, the thing that irked me is the sudden sizzling sound of eel on the grill at the end, as the ad had been so melancholic till then.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

“They should take down this sexist video”

In the advert 00:55 - 01:05 would not fool a feminist... but it is not sexist.

http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/sexist

0 ( +1 / -1 )

My thoughts were weird, then cannibalism...............yuck

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Sexism in Japan NO WAY!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The idea of eating eel. It conjures up the image of a lamprey eel chewing its way into the side a lake trout.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Not quite what the people who made the video were aiming for, I imagine.

I think they were aiming to say that they treat their eels well, and care for them.

...until they eat them!

But I'm ok with that, I love eel!

1 ( +4 / -3 )

It's not sexist, it's clumsy, ghoulish, badly made and leaves an unpleasant taste in the mouth. The image of the young girl changing to broiled eel looked like an advert for cannibalism. Creepy.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Kind of weird but interesting at the same time and it makes you want to watch it till the end to see what happens.

And what happens? She ends up as kabayaki. I agree with KnowBetter, it's not sexist, it's an advert for vegetarianism. The idea of lavishing loving care and attention on something, emphasising how cute it is, and then slaughtering it for the table is a bit ..... ghoulish? Very sad, and leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

Not quite what the people who made the video were aiming for, I imagine.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

They just talked about this on the news. Apparently the complaints were by Japanese users, and they said 女性差別 (discrimination against females).

The company pulled the ad so as not to "cause troubles".

Seems like much ado about nothing.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Yeah somehow a sad ad but not sexyst

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Not sexist but kind of sad... she was treated better than a cow or chicken but in the end... sayonara and then she's on a plate somewhere for someone's lunch or dinner. The theme if tweaked would work better at selling a vegetarian lifestyle. It's more of a tear jerker than a happy happy food commercial.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Southern Japan is here: https://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E5%8D%97%E6%97%A5%E6%9C%AC

2 ( +3 / -1 )

She is then seen lazing poolside and hula-hooping, before the film cuts to bucolic images of southern Japan.

Where is "southern Japan"?

Japanese think of Japan in terms of east and west, not north and south.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

It seems very tamed compared to the posters I see plastered all over Akihabara.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

"Japanese internet users complained it was sexist."

Cite source of the complaints, please.

Online grievances in JP are usually found on twitter or 2ch (japanese reddit), but I really doubt "sexist" complaints are found on 2ch... so this leaves us twitter + gaijin posters being the source of complaints.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Bizarre, pointless, but hardly sexist

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Didn't seem sexist to me. Kind of weird but interesting at the same time and it makes you want to watch it till the end to see what happens. That's usually the sign of an effective ad.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

It's unfortunate some Japanese are following how some western countries are marketing and publicizing things, with sex and controversy.

Come on, they don't need to do that nonsense.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Bit unusual but nothing too strange, seen way worse.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Thanks Hillclimber, but why? What were they unimpressed about?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Geez, it was a typical Japanese commercial, no need to get bent out of shape over nothing.

13 ( +15 / -2 )

Thanks for the link Rik.

Can someone clearly explain what the problem is? There was nothing wrong whatsoever with the commercial that I could see.

18 ( +21 / -3 )

"Viewers were unimpressed."

You mean foreign viewers in Japan.

3 ( +12 / -9 )

Once again, these old men who decide such things really need to ask for feedback BEFORE their 'good idea' goes public. I'm glad they mentioned the example of the city of Shima with it's Ama 'mascot'.

-3 ( +9 / -12 )

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DhhGTakSbx4

A bit bizarre but seen worse. So she is an eel in human form, growing and then ready to.... what? Sexist? What isn't these days.

14 ( +15 / -1 )

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