Offender: Carl’s Jr.
Media Outlet: Online video competition open to the public
The Offense: Fast-food chain Carl’s Jr. is currently holding a contest entitled “Hot Chicks Eating Burgers,” which promises a grand prize of $1,000, an all-expense paid trip to Las Vegas, and a chance to be in an upcoming commercial for the hottest chick eating a burger.
NOW’s Analysis: The fast food industry seems increasingly determined to use the hypersexualization of women as an avenue to peddle their bargain burgers. In the tradition of its previous commercials featuring Paris Hilton and Padma Lakshmi eating burgers in outrageously sexy ways, Carl’s Jr. has launched the “Hot Chicks Eating Burgers” contest. The webpage for the contest touts two videos: The first is a minute long segment of a woman sensually consuming a burger, whose actions range from inviting looks at the camera to deliberately sucking a slice of pineapple from the sandwich. The second is the most recent famous “hottie” endorsing Carl’s Jr., Audrina Patridge, eating a burger while on the beach in a bikini. Once that video ends, the famous Carl’s Jr. tagline, “More than just a piece of meat,” appears with overwhelming irony above a link which reads “Click here to see more of Audrina being hot.”
This form of advertising is particularly dangerous, since not only does it encourage the objectification of women within the media realm, but it actively seeks to cultivate self-objectification in the average woman. By issuing this contest, Carl’s Jr. actually pits women against one another to see who can be the most provocative, sensual, sexual object possible, all to the end of selling burgers.
Jess Hobbs, NOW Communications Team