Friday, June 5, 2009

Marks makes Sparks with new ad

When Marks & Spencer was in Canada, it was a store where my grandmother bought her unmentionables and other old lady clothes. I would occasionally get dragged in there as a young boy, with the promise of a bag of weird shrimp "crisps" as my reward for being good. When the chain pulled out of Canada 10 years ago, CBC radio was full of elderly British immigrants wondering where they'd get their favourite frozen toad-in-the-hole and spotted dick.

So you can imagine my surprise when I tripped upon a Marks & Spencer ad that looked like this:

Apparently, the model, Natalie Suliman, was as surprised as I was:

"I nearly crashed my car when I saw the advert for the first time," the Sun quoted her as saying.

"I was happily driving to a shopping mall with my music blasting when I suddenly saw a 20ft picture of my chest on the horizon.

"It was shocking to see my boobs looking so huge, but I guess that's not something I can complain about! I'm just happy the advert has been such a success," she added.

What's funny about this campaign is that Marks & Spencer is no Victoria's Secret or Frederick's of Hollywood. I always thought they were such a conservative brand. Just this week, they were named "Britain's most reputable firm", and their environmental sustainability plan has been positively reviewed by Ethical Consumer.

But when profits sag, I guess there's nothing like boobies to boost undie sales.

Grandma would've been shocked.


This is old news now, but I just found out that there was a hilarious next chapter to this story. It turns out that consumers of Ms. Suliman's... umm... stature were offended that M&S actually charges more for larger sized bras.

Here's the modified ad they ran as an apology:

Gotta love the Brits.


  1. I, for one, think that it's nice. The undies, I mean. Ok, fine. The boobies are very nice too.

  2. No argument here. What surprises me is how much the brand has changed.

    The ad really did sell a lot of those green bras, plus maybe it's a clever subliminal way to promoting all their "green" initiatives...

  3. LOL..I don't know about the ad but your first paragraph has me rolling...