EB Games in Australia is taking heat for a television ad that perpetuates the myth that chicks don't like games.
In a new television ad making the rounds Down Under, an animated couple are having a not-very-animated conversation in front of an EB Games outlet. He wants to pop in and buy the latest and greatest game to hit the market; she thinks he's a worthless layabout who hasn't even looked for a job since he got laid off from KFC back in February. Something like that, blah blah blah, and in he goes to buy his game anyway. Chicks, eh.
But once he's inside, the ever-so-helpful counter drone suggests that he can save some coin by trading in his old games on new ones. Enlightened as to the wonders of preowned, he does just that and uses his now-surplus cash to take his young lady to dinner. Later, she dusts the house and tells him to enjoy his game, because he's done enough for her already.
That's the part that really sticks in the craw of Aussie developer Rebecca Fernandez, who described the ad as a "massive step backward in the stereotypes of both men and women."
"The single worst part of the ad was at the end when the guy is playing games and his wife is dusting around him like some sort of terrible advertisement from the 50s," she told the Illawarra Mercury. 47 percent of Australian gamers are female, she said, yet the perception that core games are for men while women are only interested in casual games persists.
She wasn't the only one unhappy with the spot, as others took to Twitter to complain that the ad is sexist and alienates female customers. But EB defended it as a "light-hearted joke" that was actually written by a woman and said that a "female-oriented companion ad" is on the way.
There's a big difference between stereotyping and playing with stereotypes, but sometimes it gets awfully hard to tell the two apart. What do we think this is: genuine sexism or just failed irony? I lean heavily toward the latter, but as a worthless layabout man myself, I'm not in the best position to judge.