30 October, 2020

Denim & More

The latest Levi's ad is banking on controversy, a strategy fraught with risk

Denim & More

THE setting is a 1960s American high school. The music playing in the background is hip-hop. An 11-year-old schoolboy gets into a lift carrying a pile of books. In the lift, he sees the hand of a beautiful young woman come up from behind him, and 'lingeringly' slip a note into the front pocket of a jeans-clad 'cool and sexy' older student. On exiting the lift, the older student has the look of a contented cat that has just tasted cream. And once inside his classroom, it dawns on the 11-year-old that the female hand belongs to his teacher.

 Cool? Sexy? Sensuous? Or disgusting and outrageous? Certainly the first three, thinks Levi Strauss (India) about its new Asia-specific television commercial to be aired this week. Disgusting and outrageous? No way. But secretly, they're hoping the commercial will stir up a controversy and bring to the brand top-of-the-mind recall.

 Not that they'll admit it. "It's all about sexy and cool being the basic values of young people all over the world, though the commercial is set in...



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