I wish what you are about to watch was a brilliant sketch I created making fun of how awful tween marketing can be, but alas this is not a sketch. No this is real, very real and very scary. Brace yo’ selves.
So let me get this straight, Skechers: tweens should prance about in daisy dukes, fan themselves with cash and coyly boast that they are a “Daddy’s Girl” so that their Father/Sugar Daddy will buy them high heels masked as sneakers with style names such as “Gimme Much Dinero,” “Gimme Mega Bucks” and “Gimme After Party?” (Isn’t “after party” code for Ecstacy?)
After Babble, Jezebel and Miss Representation (they encouraged people to Tweet their outrage at @SKECHERSUSA using the hashtag #notbuyingit) spoke up about the issue, Skechers defended itself to ABC News saying “The Daddy’s Money name and the collection’s advertising are designed to be fun and lighthearted. We regret that some people have been offended by the name.”
Oh Sketchers, there is so much more to regret.
But this isn’t the first time that companies have gone the creepy route when targeting the 9-14 female demographic. Remember the 2011 outrage at Abercrombie & Fitch’s push up bikini for children?
Abercrombie Kids, which makes apparel for 8-14 year olds offered the low cut “Ashley Push Up” bikini top. After getting flack for encouraging little girls to give their non-existent pre-pubescent cleavage a boost, the company removed the words “push-up” from the bikini description on its web site but continued to sell the padded tops. Yay empowerment! (Sigh).
Or when Hollister came out with this self described line of “hot and funny” tee’s for teens.
If I saw a 13 year old wearing a shirt that said “Legal-ish” “The Twins Are Quite A Handful” or “Save A Wave, Ride A Surfer” I’d be too busy vomiting and crying to LOL at Hollister’s “funny” slogans. Also, why do waves need saving?
Then again, what do you expect from two companies that have “Legal-ish” looking shirtless boys standing outside their stores luring in customers with their bare chests?
Perhaps I’m remembering my childhood incorrectly but, I don’t feel like this much sex, misogyny and negative body focus was marketed at little me. I’m not saying my generation was sheltered, curious 11 year old me loved watching Porky’s when my parents went to bed so I could giggle and examine the dirty scenes. And yes, I did indeed video tape myself at age 12 sorta sexy dancing to Bel Biv Devoe’s “Do Me” (lucky for you my amazing performance can be found by clicking here). But those rated R movies and hip hop songs weren’t directly targeted at kids, those Sketchers, Abercrombie, and Hollister products are specifically created for and sold to young girls. It’s so blatantly gross and unhealthy. I just hope no one actually spends Daddy’s, Mommy’s, or their own hard earned money on this garbage.