Anatomy of an ad

2012-01-24 07:04

David Moseley

I’ve asked News24 to place the poster with this column so you can see what all the fuss is about. If they haven’t, you can Google it yourselves and ogle at the perfect bodies the DA Student Organisation (DASO) predicts we’ll all have in the near future.

The poster has become an overnight success, with many people praising its bold stance and others questioning the saucy pose of the enlightened couple. Either way, the poster has got people talking - at least those who dwell in that bizarre and murky twilight zone of Twitter and Facebook.

But what’s really happening in the scene depicted? In all the online correspondence I’ve read it appears that eager pundits and DA naysaysers have misinterpreted the message. So let’s talk a closer look at the future DASO wants for us all.

The relationship

Calm down, uptight people who see themselves as pillars of moral rectitude. The “couple” in question are quite obviously not in a sexual relationship. There are no “sins of the skin” going on here. If they were bonking, there’d be a lot more tongue in the image, and at least one person standing with their mouth gaping like a breathless guppy.

What this scene really depicts is the aftermath of a daring sea rescue at one of Cape Town’s famous (and frigid) nudist beaches. Our plucky heroine (obviously from KwaZulu-Natal or the Eastern Cape, because East Coasters just can’t handle the frosty Cape water) has stripped off to tan, and has gone in for a refreshing dip.

As she’s plunged into the water, ice-cold waves have knocked the wind from her sails, necessitating the intervention of our daring (and incredibly buff) hero. Pulling her from the treacherous surf, the two are forced to embrace coyly in an effort to stave off hypothermia.

I can tell that it’s a Cape Town beach rescue because of the eyes. Look at their eyes. Mr Buff is looking down to make sure the water hasn’t shrivelled his pride too much, while Ms Damsel In No Dress has obviously noticed the cold water damage and is now staring straight ahead in an effort to keep a straight face.

The message

“In OUR future, you wouldn’t look twice,” reads the message attached to the image. Now this is obviously a blatant test for would be DASO members. Of course you’d look twice. If I saw a smoking hot lady, like the one present in the poster, wandering naked around the beach, I’d definitely look twice. In fact, I’d probably look three or four times. Not only would I look, but I’d probably more than likely also try and sneak in a quick hug while no one was looking (twice).

Likewise, I’m sure most hot-blooded future women passers-by would also glance a good dozen times at Mr Just Stepped Off the Set of Grey’s Anatomy.

The hidden meaning here, however, is the bright and glorious future of swimming excellence that awaits us all if we join or vote the DA.

DASO predicts that we’ll all be such excellent swimmers in the future, due to the effects of climate change and rising seas, that when you see someone who appears to be struggling in the surf, you won’t even bother to look twice. The DA will have done so much swimming coaching for us by then, that we won’t need the stinking ferry to get us to Robben Island, we’ll simply swim there and back.

Of course, if we look at the glaring white light in the background of the image, it could also be that a another nuclear bomb has gone off, but our happy couple are so used to them exploding, they can’t be troubled to give it a second glance.

- Follow @david_moseley on Twitter.

Send your comments to David

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  • Dieter - 2012-01-24 07:40

    i cant believe so many people miss the point of this adds, we really are a nation of bigots and hater

      CarlS - 2012-01-24 10:15

      It's sad really. New SA but we're all still so very concerned with our little differences that we judge other people's choices.

  • daryltt - 2012-01-24 08:16

    Wow. I had it all wrong. Thanks for clearing it up :)

  • Derrick - 2012-01-24 08:25

    Hahahahaahahahaha your funniest column yet! Usually you infuriate me with your Capetonian smugness but this was genuinely funny!

  • kaMazibuko - 2012-01-24 08:32

    lol this is funny....a good one for a change @David ;-)

  • Tertius - 2012-01-24 08:35

    I was actully totally disgusted with this poster. Until I read your explanation. Now I want one to stick up in my bar. I do not even have a bar, but I will get one just to stick the poster up there.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-01-24 10:05

      You were disgusted in this poster???? Jees dude can I suggest you never page through the cosmopolitan!

  • fezile.nkosi - 2012-01-24 08:40

    Thing they would have been able to get thier message scross clearer if they had used a whole mixed race family unit rather then a racy pic (of people who dont even look South African may I add)

      Mary - 2012-01-24 08:50

      I have to agree with fezile's last comment, in brackets. I love the poster and the message, but would have preferred a girl with a less straightened coiffure and darker complexion. DASO missed the natural beauties out there!

      Truthis - 2012-01-24 11:29

      What do South Africans look like Fezile? And Mary - You want a darker complexion. Did you LOOK at the poster? Jeesh!!! As for the hair, I see more black woman with hair extentions etc than I see natural. So what is your problem with the poster really?

      Mary - 2012-01-24 16:17

      Yes, you're right, Truthis, it was shortsighted of me. Why shouldn't Black women Europeanise their hair if that makes them feel prettier. After all they're not bare-bosomed, wearing just skin aprons any more either.

  • Godfrey - 2012-01-24 08:51

    The DA is short changing us. Why not a full length poster? This is abysmal service delivery.

      CarlS - 2012-01-24 10:15

      You beauty!

      Itumeleng - 2012-01-25 12:51


  • Clayton - 2012-01-24 10:57

    I can honestly say I don't notice people looking twice anymore...

  • Peter - 2012-01-24 11:11

    Good one, Getting the message across by deliberately ignoring the elephant in the room :)

  • cliff.slabbert - 2012-01-24 11:57

    Very entertaining Mr Moseley :-)))))))))))))

  • Lisa - 2012-01-24 12:39

    LOL, funny article. Awesome take on things there David.

  • mystae - 2012-01-24 12:58

    No matter how well I can swim, I'd still take a ferry to Robben Island. Becoming shark bait is something that happens not to me.

  • Nyiks11 - 2012-01-24 14:25

    I definitely would look twice if I saw an ANCYL member in the arms of an Afriforum member .

  • Nyiks11 - 2012-01-24 14:35

    and if it were an ANCYL poster , they both would not be this lean and toned . The poster would also show some ass , mzansi for sure

      Lara - 2012-01-24 17:12

      Oh no, I can just picture that poster. If they put it up at fast food outlets our nation would be thin in a year.

      Keith - 2012-01-25 09:12

      No. I quite agree, they would both be overweight!

  • amos.mcinga - 2012-01-24 15:25

    Boring article....

  • markus.botha - 2012-01-24 15:55

    I think this posterboy lost a bet while he was drunk.

      Heidi - 2012-01-25 11:40

      SHUT UP

  • Trudy - 2012-01-24 16:16

    Confused that mixed-race relationships are still seen as a controversial enough taboo to grab attention for advertising purposes. Honestly, what century are DASO in? Regardless of what the point was, there's thousands of mixed-race couples around, I find the concept about as fresh and original as lukewarm tea.

      Janinekittyb - 2012-01-24 16:18


      Heidi - 2012-01-25 11:42

      ha ha what world are you living in Trudy? OK, granted, in the cities it is more common, but it is not seen as much in small towns so it causes quite the fuss. I know.

  • Dane - 2012-01-24 16:26

    Well done DA!! Buckle your seatbelt dave, times are a' changing....better get used to it

  • Ntombiet - 2012-01-24 18:30

    I am just grateful that she is not wearing a weave!

  • Ntombiet - 2012-01-24 18:32

    I am so grateful that she is not wearing a weave.

  • Blip - 2012-01-24 20:13

    The best part of this poster kerfuffle was seeing the right-winger volkstaat sect harrumphing and bleating. Change terrifies those bigots.

  • Mouldy - 2012-01-25 11:13

    David, I honestly think you have run out of coherent or intelligent things to say, and I do not find you funny anymore either. I grew tired of slamming Moerdyk’s work, so I gave up on him and started reading you instead. You had me mildly amused at first but the stuff you serve up now is just plain boring. So I guess it’s on to the next wannabe journalist/columnist on News24.

      Marion - 2012-01-26 02:01

      oh my gosh and your comments will be missed!!!!

  • Cris - 2012-01-25 11:32

    So what black students and white students banging. Its only people who have not been to varsity who dont know that its what you do in first and second year all the time!

  • Heidi - 2012-01-25 11:38

    hahah that is EXACTLY what I thought it was about...I love it. It is saying that with DA in power, relationships with our fellow South africans, whatever their nationality, will be the norm. I look forward to that day

  • Lindi - 2012-01-30 15:19

    One longggg stare is enough - why look twice?

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