A couple of years ago, a question written on a tube advert provoked a heated backlash from Londoners, and rightly so. Protein World’s lurid yellow ad featuring a bikini-clad female model asked commuters if they were ‘beach body ready’ to publicise their latest protein shake and was called out for body-shaming women.
At the time, Protein World brushed off the criticism, saying in a statement: ‘it is a shame that in 2015 there are still a minority who aren’t focusing on celebrating those who aspire to be healthier, fitter and stronger.’ Now, the company has taken out yet more ad space on the tube with a new campaign.
This time around, the new posters advertising a 30-day weight loss challenge feature reality TV star Khloe Kardashian, who is kitted out in a leotard and leg warmers next to the caption: 'Can You Keep Up With A Kardashian?' According to Protein World, the weight loss challenge is for women who want to ‘feel more confident and comfortable in [their] own skin, lose baby weight, or just show [their] ex what he’s missing’.
Unsurprisingly, some Londoners are pretty unimpressed with the ad and have called on Sadiq Khan to ban the posters from the Underground, following his announcement last summer that adverts which pressured people to adhere to an unhealthy or unrealistic body image should be banned from the tube.
A spokesperson for the Mayor of London said: 'This advert was closely reviewed and deemed to comply with the new TfL advertising policy that bans adverts that could pressurise people to conform to unhealthy or unrealistic body images.' But, while the ads they remain up, we can count on Londoners to give some pretty creative responses.
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