Ladies, the struggle for equality between the sexes is over! Sure, you still make less money for the same work, and sure, companies still play on insecurities they reinforce so you'll buy useless crap, and sure, people still say things like, "if you don't want to be raped, don't wear a short skirt." But! Now you have your own anthropomorphized M&M who's smart, outspoken, and supposedly a feminist. (Not like that trampy green one, am I right? Take your knee-high boots and your fake eyelashes and catch the jitney back to Whoreville, green M&M!)
Meet Ms. Brown: she wears glasses. She's a career woman — Chief Chocolate Officer, if you must ask. She uses "Ms.," because her marital status does not define her and it's 1974. She has this game on lock and she's going to premiere at the goddamn Superbowl. Check it:
"M&M’s, sold by the confectionery giant, will use a commercial during Super Bowl XLVI on Feb. 5 to introduce a character to represent brown M&M’s named Ms. Brown. She will be the sixth computer-animated mascot for the brand, following walking and talking versions of the red, yellow, blue, green and orange M&M’s…
In a teaser effort that begins this week, Ms. Brown will arrive in social media… There will also be print, online and mobile ads as well as a deal to incorporate Ms. Brown into the radio program 'Elvis Duran and the Morning Show.'"
That's right, she's taking down the patriarchy one tweet at a time. Let's see if you can handle this truth, misogynists:
Yeah! The struggle for women to make history is hard, because women have been oppressed for centuries! But it's not hard if you're candy, because you're made of delicious chocolate. Stop slacking, human women.
If I sound massively cynical about this, it's only because I am. (As I am about most advertising. As we all should be.) Sure, it's great that M&M's newest mascot is a smart and successful female and not a copy of the sexy green one. I am, I guess, as happy about that as I can be. But… we've had three female Secretaries of State at this point, so I think M&M's missed the window on this being provocative. Or even on trend. All this fanfare (which the company itself is creating) about how she's smart and outspoken makes it feel like we're supposed to laud the move as being somehow special, when my reaction is more akin to, "Thanks for catching up."
I will concede the choice to premiere the character at the Superbowl is an interesting one, though I reserve the right to change that opinion once the commercial actually airs. One overly suggestive line about melting in mouths or hands and I am out of here.
Bottom line, though: talking food is always creepy.