10 Risqué Commercials That Were Banned From Television
Commercials have become an essential part of many of our lives. We are bombarded with advertisements every time we watch television or go to the cinema to watch a movie. In either case, companies want to get viewers to see their products and services in the best possible light, forcing them to come up with ever more imaginative ways to grab our attention and get us interested. One frequent tactic is to use sex appeal to help sell, though occasionally companies can go a step too far, forcing government agencies to ban them for being a little bit too risqué.
Zazoo, a company that makes a number of different types of condoms, came up with a unique idea for an advertising campaign. Rather than focus on the sex element as you might expect, it showed a couple in a supermarket with their screaming child, implying that a condom would have helped them avoid this situation. It was subsequently banned in a number of European countries.
Ikea ran a series of commercials in 2001 aimed at getting younger adults interested in buying new storage cabinets, drawers and cupboards with a campaign getting them to tidy up. This involved having various adverts whereby couples would be in intimate situations that would be spoiled by clutter and unwanted items lying around, culminating in one scene where a small child picks up a vibrator.
Having a sexy woman, in this case Eva Mendes, roll around seductively on a bed while naked was always going to create a bit of a stir. That didn’t stop Calvin Klein from going ahead with their commercial for Secret Obsession though, with just a few well-placed arms and bed sheets hiding Eva’s modesty. TV censors banned it after a very short time.
In 2005, Ann Summers ran a campaign that drew plenty of criticism. While it contained no explicit imagery or scenes of a sexual nature, it did feature the tagline of “flick your bean better”, an obvious reference to masturbation. No wonder then that it was banned by several broadcasters from appearing on television.
It’s hard to eat burgers in a seductive manner and fast food chain Carl’s Jr obviously knew this. That is perhaps why they opted for their commercial of a new Spicy BBG burger to just show a bunch of attractive women in bikini’s in a car wash fantasy.
PETA created an advert that was due to be shown during the Super Bowl, however they had to rethink their plans when it turned out to be too sexy to be shown on live television. Entitled Veggie Love, it effectively tried to sexualize vegetables by having women cavort with the food while wearing very little clothing.
The advertisement for Beyoncé’s range of perfume, Beyoncé Heat, was banned from being shown on daytime television after it garnered a number of complaints. As well as having the pop star in a skimpy outfit, it showed her rubbing herself and showing off a bit too much flesh for the censors liking.
With a woman apparently on the run from the cops, she enters a men’s bathroom only to find an apparently blind man sitting in the corner. In this Levi’s commercials, entitled Washroom, she proceeds to strip down to her underwear and change her clothes in front of the man, only for it to be revealed at the end that he wasn’t blind at all.
Kyle Minogue shocked viewers with this commercial for lingerie and clothing specialist Agent Provocateur. It featured the pop star gyrating on a mechanical rodeo bull wearing some skimpy underwear. It was deemed too hot for television and could only be shown in cinemas in the United Kingdom.
Although it was banned from television before it was ever shown, Skittles may have intended for that to happen as the commercial became a huge internet sensation and a big hit on YouTube, where there are less rules governing advertisements. It showed a man and woman apparently having sex, with the end result having the man ejaculate skittles all over his newly wedded wife.