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Advertising Humour

The Gieves & Hawkes Homoerotic Photo Novella…

Wandering through London the other day with an old friend from University, I stumble upon Savill Row and the main London shop for Gieves & Hawkes. After a couple of seconds parsing the adverts I find myself disoriented and confused. They are extraordinarily weird. They have an ostensible father/son theme, but it’s a strange articulation of it. It’s set in weird environments more appropriate for romantic photography and using many of the same icons – the loosely hanging tie, the power differentials of looking and looked at, a rich evening light. After a while I come to view them as a strangely subversive public gay photonovella. I therefore present the four photos that they had in the window—the only four (this is not a case of selective editing)—under the title, The conquests of a Silver Fox and posit that their clothing is now mostly being marketed at older gay men of phenomenal wealth who are looking to buy gifts for their younger male companions. Or at least I’m contending that this reading is at least equally plausible as the father/son reading and that it may be intentional that both can be supported by the same imagery.

Apologies about the reflections in the glass.

20 replies on “The Gieves & Hawkes Homoerotic Photo Novella…”

sorry Tom – disregard that last comment – google newsreader had an earlier version of your text I think where the son & father reference wasn’t present – I should have re-read here before posting…

I’m trying really hard, but I can’t see anything about those photos that is even remotely heterosexual. Especially when you include the extra ones on their website, with the playful arm-wrestling and the posing with hands on the shoulders and the chess…
Okay, the chess maybe isn’t that homoerotic. But it’s an aberration.

Gay, gay, gay and yet… what stylish young gay man would wear such a hideous yellow jacket? So I summise it’s implied “gay” to market an implied coolness and “style” to straight guys.

I clicked on their website and they do label the adverts as “father and son.” But the extra ads on their site are just as homoerotic as the ones you saw.

On their website, they are repeatedly labeled as father and son.
I think their intention was to show that their two lines –
Gieves and Gieves & Hawkes – were meant for two different
generations. Gieves & Hawkes is the conservative one and
Gieves is the hipper one.

Okay you’re right about the silver fox but the other person looks no more like a boy than Jake G did a woman (in drag) on SNL. The first photo loks like Claire Danes and the other look like thin-young women trying to and dressing in their brothers clothes. Are both models men, yes but do they both look like men, NO, one is the man the other is…????

I’ll take the hot daddy type as well. After all, that “boy” is one hormone shot away from being transgendered. Daddy needs a real son!

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