Under assault from laddie-wise competitors, Maxim, with the aid of Crispin Porter + Bogusky, has done a manly 180. Metrosexuality is out and some kind of Axe-boy equivalent of the Miller High Life man's man ethos is in. In a multimedia consumer/trade offensive, CP+B has launched wildpostings, go cards, brochures aimed at ad agencies, a petition filed with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife service-they claim this is not an idle stunt, it's for real-and four really cheap school science class-parody web films. The films tackle now-horrendous "masculine" developments like bikini waxing, eyebrow plucking and hair bleaching; tofu and arugula eating; and pilates and recumbent bicycling. All we need is Ernest Hemingway as a digitally-resuscitated spokesman. Then again, he wore a dress when he was little, so maybe not. "Like everyone else in this industry, we spend a lot of time hawking products," says ACD Dave Schiff. "But every once in a while we get a chance to make the world a better place. If we can save even one man, it will have been well worth the effort." OK, Dave, but tofu is an easy target, no one eats it but Richard Simmons and the Dalai Lama. Is it really that simple for a laddie book to change its spots and write off all that grooming and fashion fuss, as if metrosexuality were all of a sudden the problem and not the solution? Yes, because, in the new Maxim strategy it is the problem and not the solution. "Metrosexuality is running rampant," laments Schiff. "Just go into any shoe store and look at what's on the 'men's' wall. It's like footwear for a Broadway musical. So Maxim is making a stand. And, believe it or not, women have turned out to be some of our biggest supporters. They don't want a man who looks like he just walked off the set of Evita."
Client: Maxim Agency: Crispin Porter + Bogusky, Miami ECD: Alex Bogusky ACDs: David Schiff, Alex Burnard ADs: Alex Burnard, Mike del Marmol, Geordie Stephens CWs: David Schiff Print Producer: Cindy Perez Art Producer: Sheri Radel Illustrators: Bob Hynes, Joel Levirne, Mike del Marmol Photographer: Sebastian Gray Designer: Rahul Panchal