Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Broadview Security protects the ladies from teh evil dudes

What the hell is going on with the Brinks/Broadview commercials lately? (or not so lately; this probably dates back pretty far). In the last seven months alone these types of commercials have been uploaded onto Youtube, and have been played on our t.v.'s. Each time one of them comes on I watch them with confusion, and disgust. It didn't take me long to figure out what all these scenarios have in common.

In case you can't view the videos, here's the run-down:

Mom and daughter (or just single lady) are/is alone in their / her big ass house.
There are no men in the house, illustrating a vulnerability on the part of the woman / women.
Scary man in hoodie / knit cap / rain soaked flannel shirt kicks / elbows in door.
Scary man looks scary.
Scary man is scared off by alarm after sending a threatening look at the woman / women.
Phone rings.
Woman runs and hides. Answers phone.
Mark / Tom / Rick is on the other end to ask if you / everything are / is okay/secure.
Mark / Tom / Rick sends cops.
All is well.

What they've painted here is the supposed vulnerability of women being alone in a house (a freakin nice house at that), sometimes with a daughter (note, not a son--that would ruin the vulnerability they're trying to convince the viewers of having). Then you have the predatory men. They're uber-aggressive. They break doors down with seemingly little effort. Despite this, however, it's the sound of the alarm that chases them off.

But they're not trying to be anti-man. In fact, they're elevating masculinity in an obviously familiar way. Men are supposed to provide for and protect their families, which is assumed to be his female partner and their children. There is no husband around to protect the mothers. The boyfriend has just left his girlfriend's house. They're all vulnerable. But not to fear! This security system is THE MAN when others are absent. And they will protect the precious womens from other men!

I think what makes me most uncomfortable in these ads is the sense of intrusion--these men are forcing themselves into the women's homes. The looks they shoot at the women just before they bolt are particularly frightening since it sort of hints not only of almost-theft, but almost-rape (which is also theft). But the women were safe all along. Not only do they have a blaring alarm system, there's always going to be a Mark, Tom, or Rick to call and reassure them of their safety, as well as sending the police (guess what? More men!).

Oh yeah, and they're all white women. Clearly these are the only women worth protecting (POC and other white men don't need alarms, apparently). I have a feeling that if Broadview attempts to diversify their ads, the would-be aggressive thief will be the token person of color. I challenge Broadview to prove me wrong.


Intransigentia said...

I don't have video handy, but they also have one that makes it even more explicit - it's narrated by a man sitting in his hotel room talking about how he travels a lot for his job and worries about the safety of his wife and daughters adn that's why he uses this alarm service. Then he tells the story shown in the other ads, cutting between him talking and wife/daughter looking scared and scary man looking scary. Lovely, eh?

Laura Kathleen said...

I hate the one where the lady is on her exercise machine and the man breaks a window with a flashlight. :/ Yeah, men NEVER have their doors kicked in, right?

Anonymous said...

All we have to do is start costing the company money. Just call 'em up. Act like you're interested. Keep a guy on the phone for a half-hour or so. And then abruptly change your mind at the end. If you really wanna cost 'em money, have a sails rep out to your home for a few hours, listen to his spiel, then (all of the sudden) "NO SALE. I canged my mind." If 1000 folks a day wasted that much company time for no financial gain to the company, I'll betcha dollars to doughnuts they'd make more racially balanced TV commericals. After-all, why must my children, which I went off & fought for in Iraq, grow-up feeling ashamed of themselves for the 'crime' of being born white?

FilthyGrandeur said...


i'm not sure if your comment is sarcastic or not. since it's unclear i'm putting up a disclaimer for my readers: i leave your comment up only to illustrate your own ignorance--way to focus on only one part of my post, completely ignoring the sexism. i'm not even sure what to say about your "crime of being born white" bullshit--that part i'm certain of your sarcasm, and it's not welcome here. further comments of this nature will not be published.

Anonymous said...

Well... women are more vulnerable than men.

FilthyGrandeur said...

@ Anonymous-- you only think they are. these collective ads imply that only women need protecting, that only women are victims of break-in and burglary, and that only women need that added sense of protection, when in truth there are of plenty of men who have a security system.

i'm really getting sick of people today...

Scott said...

I wanna make a fake commercial with a guy in a hoodie or ski mask just chillin in his house and a mom and daughter walk by the house and the mom looks at the daughter with a evil smile and they both kick down the door..

HOW??? said...

How did you miss the fact that all intruders are white males? Are we not allowed to see blacks or mexicans busting down a door? Too sensitive of a topic??? I have more problems with that than your issues with a "white lady" living in a nice house.

FilthyGrandeur said...


no, actually, i didn't miss it. reread the last paragraph before you come here and disrespectfully disagree. granted i could have expanded more on that, but you'll also notice this post is several months old, and incidentally i was celebrating my fiance's birthday. so yeah. time constraints and whatnot. feel free to comment here again, but i caution you to be nice or your comments may fail to appear here.

Anonymous said...

All the broadview commercials seem odd to me, but the one that is really rediculous is when: a lady with friends meets a guy named AJ, then everyone leaves and then AJ circles around the back and tries to break in and attack her.
I really hope my daughter dosnt grow up watching commercials like this.

Hanksta said...

Okay, you commented about all the women being white and based on the appearance of their homes, fairly well off. Has anyone commented about all the burglars being just white males? I don't know, but when I watch the news of robberies, shootings, smash and graps, guess what? They are predominantly black. Is Broadview being overtly p.c. to avert backlash.

FilthyGrandeur said...


there is quite a bit wrong with your comment. the news is biased when it comes to reporting crimes. what you see on your local news is not representative of "who commits all the crimes."

Anonymous said...

I'm glad someone else noticed how sexist these commercials are.

Katie D said...

These commercials are among the most overtly sexism commercials I have seen. As mentioned above, they are implying that only women's houses are broken into, that only women need protection. These commercials are a "scare tactic" trying to get women to feel afraid of being without a man or trying to get men to purchase their female loved ones a security system. Women are not all helpless and vulnerable.

On top of being sexist, these commercials are utterly ridiculous anyways and I would never purchase a security system through this type of company.