“Not for Women”

In Dr. Pepper’s newest commercial, I’m not quite sure what the point they’re trying to get across is.

Oh wait, there it is.

Their recently released advertisement for Dr. Pepper Ten was put together after research found that men typically shy away from diet drinks, therefore directing the newest low calorie drink at men. However, their blunt attempt at sarcasm once again just reinforces stereotypical gender roles for both males and females.

Women are portrayed to not be worthy enough of the drink as they don’t drive around souped up jeeps shooting guns at predators in the deep jungle. In the end, they’re just not “manly” enough for the drink.

Their remarks such as, “Hey ladies. Enjoying the film? Of course not. Because this is our movie and this is our soda” and “You can keep the romantic comedies and lady drinks. We’re good” are absolutely absurd. Assuming that women are disgusted with violent action films and “manly” characteristics is just reinforcing typical gender roles that the media has engrained into our society.

Most adults probably view the commercial without a second glance, not giving any thought to the roles portrayed. But think to children who view the commercial and what they take away from it. Little boys see the violence and the “manliness” of the character looking dirty with bulging muscles and are believed to think that that is what a true man looks like. Little girls will remember the lasting impression of “this is not for women” and link that to women not being able to partake in activity like that portrayed in the commercial. In total, it is an absurd portrayal for adults and especially for young impressionable minds.

Even when you look at the bottle itself shows you exactly who their target audience is. Their old diet drink consisted of a red bottle with dainty bubbles while the new can sports grey packaging with silver bullets.


Apart from the commercial, Dr. Pepper took it a step further and created a Facebook App that allows only men to access. The page includes “manly” games such as a shooting gallery where you aim at high heels and lipstick along with a “Man quiz” with questions on activities like fishing and hunting. Really? What if all men don’t like fishing and hunting, are they not deemed “manly” enough to be a man? I could more than likely hold my own when giving information on fishing, but of course according to Dr. Pepper, that’s not an activity for women.

Dr. Pepper would have never ended with “Not for Jews” or “Not for Republicans,” so why would they think “Not for Women” is perfectly fine?

–Ashleigh Mavros, Student Outreach Coordinator


About Ohio U Women's Center

The Ohio University Women’s Center serves and responds to the needs of OU women students, faculty, and staff, as well as members of the community. Founded in 2007, the center is dedicated to creating an inclusive and welcoming campus climate for all members of the community through programs, resources, referrals, advocacy, and education. Located in Baker University Center 403.
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