For this essay, I will be analysing the semiotics and ideology behind a print ad of my choice, the advert that I chose to analyse is the “would you kiss you?” advert by Schick, this advert was advertising a free razor for valentine’s day for men to try and convince them to shave their beard for their loved ones on valentine’s day. Firstly, I like to start with just stating the obvious, so to start with there is a woman in the advert on a bed in lingerie but she appears to have a beard, which is something you don’t see women have, you can also see that the audience is clear that it’s for men because it states that with the sentence “Men, get your free Valentine’s Day razor” so it’s straight to the point on who the audience is targeted at. Next, I would like to look more in depth about how I feel the signifier in this advert, for this case the bearded lady, I want to go into more depth about what kind of language is being spoken here, firstly the first clear language that is being communicated in this advert is clearly non-verbal, it’s clear that there is non-verbal because it’s a print ad featuring the bearded lady, to start off I’ll explain what non-verbal communication is, non-verbal communication is language that isn’t spoken using words but is spoken using things such as body language, and for this advert the non-verbal communication is shown with the bearded lady looking to someone in a very seductive way and that is helped by what she is wearing because she is in the dressing gown and on the bed. Another language that is clear here is Written communication with most print adverts this is essential to help the audience get an idea of what advert is trying to promote and for this ad its quite clear that it’s for men because as said before it has a subtitle that reads “Men, get your free Valentine’s Day razor” this heavily implies that it is for men, the title of “Would you kiss you?” That has been used here, I feel that the meaning behind this title is that they are trying to ask the target audience a rhetorical question that doesn’t expect an answer from the audience. I believe that the meaning behind the woman on the bed in lingerie with a beard is that the advert is trying to shock the male audience by putting them in a scenario on which they have a very attractive woman in lingerie with a beard almost like how literally the whole of Europe was stunned by Conchita Wurst’s appearance in the 2014 Eurovision she is also known as the ‘Bearded Lady’, she also won the competition that year as well, the first time for Austria since Eurovision 1966. Next, I would like to discuss how women are portrayed in adverts, to start off I feel that women are portrayed as overly sexualized drones that’s only goal in life is to please the male agenda, which shouldn’t be the case but as Magdalena Petersson McIntyre once stated in her journal “Women and femininity are represented in many and often contradictory ways. Sexy, romantic, elegant, mysterious, sporty, girly, cosmopolitan, masculine, oriental, these are only some of the many ways of portraying feminine beauty.” And in my opinion, I 100% agree with her words there’s so many male adverts that portray women as mindless zombies. This is heavily shown in this advert where the female who is the main eye catcher in this advert is shown as overly sexualized and very seductive and in my opinion, I find it that this hasn’t changed at all in all kinds of media women are portrayed as overly sexualized. In the past this wasn’t the case based on women not being as sexualized but still requires them to be up to male standards except in the past instead of looks, a man’s ideal women are a stay at home housewife who cooks, cleans and sees to her mans every need, as shown in this print ad here by Kellogg’s, this one is titled “The best to you each morning” and this isn’t necessarily a male advert targeted to men but this a prime example that women were being portrayed as stay at home wives, which you don’t see now in modern times for adverts like these who are aimed at family’s, they are now more family orientated with it solely focused on showing the children enjoy the products. Going back to the advert that I’ve chosen, I believe a signifier to be the woman with a beard and I feel that the signified meaning behind this is equality, now this is a strange one to pick especially there’s not much you can say about, but I believe that it is simple, the woman who has the beard, which isn’t normal by todays standard so I think the advert is trying to show the viewer that they should shave their beard for special occasion like valentine’s day as shown on the print ad with the text saying “Men, Get your free Valentine’s day razor.”, this shows that not only is it for Valentine’s day, but it also helps us identify who our target audience is and for this instance this advert was aimed at the male audience. Carrying on about my point of equality I feel that the slight nod to equality is nice especially as in my opinion other forms of media gender equality still has massive problem like in movies for example, Melissa McSweeney has shown in an article that I’ve read where she is talking about how women in films are still not equal in the sense of getting a leading role in a film, she put up a stat of male to female in past decades of how many males and females have featured in academy awards with a well presented infographic as shown here, she noted “Despite all of these grim statistics, the institute notes that some progress has been made in the Male-to-Female ratio in Best Picture-Nominated in the academy awards, though it is important it is important to realise has not had a consistently downward trend.” For me this I still feel is a big problem and even thought she does touch upon how the trend of males feature in best picture nominations is decreasing but its only just slightly which is something that needs to be changed, and even though this article I do see even more decreasing trend because I believe that the film industry has noticed this trend and had tried to act upon it with more and more films being released that have female lead roles are increasing which is something that I personally love to see. Lastly, extending on my point of equality, a form of media that is showing the best kind of progress is video games, video games are becoming with female lead roles becoming more prominent now, and this is due to how many female gamers have become a more common occurrence now especially in an article titled “The Slow Evolution of Women in Video Games”, this article was written by Libby-Jane Charleston and in this article, Mrs. Libby-Jane talks about how women are slowly getting equality in the video game industry with the recent rise of female gamers with a statistic from her article that states “Whether times have changed since then is up to debate, but one sure thing is designers have listened to the pleas of the growing band of female gamers. While there are still challenges faced in terms of being a minority in what is still a mostly male dominated industry, statistics still show 48% percent of all gamers are female.” I personally feel coming from someone with plenty of experience with videos games that this evolution of females in videos games is becoming quite significant, with game developers now having to listen to the female audience of what they want in videos games which is quite clear to have more options of customization with some games still behind on this trend like FIFA, yes they have now implemented the option for Female football teams but there are still steps that they could take to ensure that all of their audience from both the male side and the female side like they could include female footballer creation which isn’t implemented into the game yet. In all the messages that we see in this print advert I conclude that this advert was an attempt to surprise the male audience with the overly sexualized woman sitting on the bed looking very provocative but with an odd twist that would catch the eye of the male audience but not for the free razor but shock of the bearded woman looking provocative whilst also believing that the advert is trying to give out a small cry for equality, it may only be a subtle cry for equality but it’s now becoming a more prominent feature in media now.