From the department of weird ad campaigns: Dockers wants men to feel empowered by their pants

From the department of weird ad campaigns: Dockers wants men to feel empowered by their pants

Now those are some manly khakis (Image: Ed Yourdon) 

Like that Seinfeld episode where Jerry and his girlfriend argue over a Dockers ad, we’re similarly baffled by the company’s Wear the Pants ad campaign that’s gracing the TTC right now. Its bizarre pants-centric manifesto is plastered on stairwells, turnstiles and walls in Queen station.

Dockers’ lament about “the decline of modern-day masculinity”—which went up just in time for International Women’s Day—is an ode to the pre-metrosexual era, when men wore the pants, helped old ladies cross the street, opened doors for women and generally “took charge because that’s what they did.” It goes on:

Somewhere along the way, the world decided it didn’t need men… Latte by foamy non-fat latte, men were stripped of their khakis and left stranded on the road between boyhood and androgyny… It’s time to get your hands dirty, it’s time to answer the call of manhood. It’s time to WEAR THE PANTS.

Zippy, attention-grabbing ad copy, for sure. And let’s assume it’s a joke. But the accompanying press release we received takes on a strangely solemn tone when citing some stats: men’s testosterone levels have dropped 17 per cent since 1987 (um, OK), unemployment is up disproportionately for guys, there’s been an increase in male grooming products, and there are now more female than male grad students.* The solution? Apparently, it’s khakis!

“Wearing the pants has never looked so good,” claims the ad copy. We beg to differ, judging by the frumpy freebie pair that arrived at the office. All we can say is, at least they weren’t pleated.

* We’re peeved that higher education opportunities for women somehow translates to emasculation of those with Y chromosomes.