Sunday, 22 August 2010

Gucci Guilty: A Femine Scent with Masculine Undertones

So another page is written in the page of fashion-celebrity co-operation. The new scent for autumn 2010, Gucci Guilty, appears to being promoted in the "mini-movie" style that is quickly becoming a must-have for powerhouse designers and fame-hungry celebrities looking to raise their profile. Of course, this is nothing new - the links between perfume and celebrity, and the buying power it excites, have gone back to Marylin Monroe and Chanel No5 (whether intended or not, you cannot deny the response her remark had and is still having today...), but this is something that appears a little more adventurous and refreshing (if not particularly original) than the industry has seen in quite a while. 

The Gucci "trailer", itself a promotion for a later "mini-movie" style commercial, features Rachel Evan Wood, Chris Evans, and bears the name and unmistakable style of comic-book legend Frank Miller. Wood spins around in a 50's-style convertable with fire spurting from the wheels, Chris Evans stares at the camera doing his best to look intense and meaningful, and the silhouette of an undressing woman dances enticingly on a wall - this is a perfume add for women with a masculine neo-noir atmosphere, high-octane visuals, and not one hair flick or floaty floral dress in sight. While I am more than usually inclined to roll my eyes at Hollywood's, or any other strictly-mainstream organisation's, attempt to be "dark", "niche", or even "geeky" ("geek-chic" is a term that should be banned in all English-speaking countries on pain of disembowelment by rhinoceros) it looks like the trend isn't abating any time soon - and I'm not sure that in this case, it should.

If this perfume add is anything to go by, it shows that women are expanding their horizons (or, as commercials always echo what has already happened, have already expanded their horizons) to fields more traditionally reserved for the men. Hells yes, they can appreciate some sexy retro machinery driven by a dazzling blond in a revealing dress. There's no forced messages of being 'pretty' (Flora) 'famous' (The One) or sexy and nothing else (Light Blue) -  it is sexuality that is attempting to sell this product, but a different kind to the one usually associated with perfume adds. This sexuality is fierce, empowered, and just as pleasing to the man on the sofa, as well as his girlfriend. It isn't a warped female vision of what is 'sexy' (all too often ensuring walking rib-cages and hyperbolic styling) - it is a blend of masculine and feminine desire, attraction, and appeal.

Of course it is impossible to judge before seeing the complete commercial, but this advert appears to be more about selling a much more healthy, balanced image of sexuality along with the perfume - and in this sub-section of the industry, where as much depends on image of the product as the perfume itself - this is no small thing.

You can watch the trailer here.

Visit Gucci's official website here.

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