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Feminism: Sex and gender discussions

"Acceptable then, Not now - tell that to Robin Thicke"

22 replies

DuelingFanjo · 26/07/2013 10:09

Listening to Ken Bruce this morning and he played 'Addicted to Love' by Robert Palmer and mentioned the video saying 'Acceptable then, not now - tell that to Robin Thicke'.

It set me thinking... I was 16 when that video came out and I remember there being a lot of talk at the time about how awful it was and how it objectified women.

Anne Diamond is another person who recently talked about how things were different 'back then' saying '30-odd years ago, it was almost acceptable for a man to be known as the office lech.'

Do other people agree with me that it was never acceptable back then, it was just that f* all was done about it? What do you remember for back then or even before then? Surely women were raising their voices just as much as they do now but more likely to be ignored? Or are we still being ignored given that 'blurred Lines' is still getting lots of airplay and Anne Diamond is excusing child mollestation?

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worldgonecrazy · 26/07/2013 10:19

I was a teen when the Robert Palmer video came out. One huge difference is that the women were clothed, cool and glamorous. Yes, they were in the video purely based on looks but they looked like they had depth. There was no aire of wannabee-famous desperation about them. As a shallow teen I wanted to be like one of those women.

That cannot be said for the women in the Robin Thicke video who have an air of wannabee desperation but are neither clothed nor aspirational on any level, to any woman with a modicum of intelligence.

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MardyBra · 26/07/2013 10:23

I've just had to google Robin Thicke (old gimmer - not my sort of music). Totally agree with the OP. I also remember the video but don't remember the objections at the time (was in late teens). In Ken Bruce's defence, I think most people at the time thought it acceptable (I'm not saying it isn't btw) and at least he's trying (albeit clumsily) to present a feminist-friendly viewpoint.

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DuelingFanjo · 26/07/2013 10:36

does no one remember there being a bit of discussion about how awful Robert Palmer's video was though? Maybe it was just some teenage girls and women who found it objectionable? Just like now - some women don't find the Robin Thicke video/Lyrics objectionable even now.

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MardyBra · 26/07/2013 10:36

Tried to find the video of Robin Thicke on YouTube but I don't think it's available. But I got the gist from this rather splendid . Bloody catchy tune though.

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MardyBra · 26/07/2013 10:41

I was in my late teens at the time - just started university. Maybe ( regrettably) i was too busy getting pissed on snakebite and not sharpening up my feminist sensibilities at the time.

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CiscoKid · 26/07/2013 10:42

I seem to remember the Robert Palmer video as women fully clothed in black, and acting like robots whilst playing instruments. Am I thinking of a different song? What were the objections back then?

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tenlittlebuns · 26/07/2013 10:44

Yes, I remember being repulsed by the Robert Palmer video at the time, and am sure there was comment on it then.

worldgonecrazy I don't think the women looked like they had any depth at all - wasn't that the point? They all looked the same! My revulsion was, and still is, the point that they all looked identical.

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LeGavrOrf · 26/07/2013 10:45

I was a kid in the 80s and really wanted to grow up looking like one of those Robert Palmer girls.

I had only seen the clothed Robin Thicke video, only watched the one yesterday where they were naked and I was horrified. Apart from the utterly revolting lyrics.

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DuelingFanjo · 26/07/2013 10:47

"What were the objections back then?"

The objections were along the lines that they were being objectified.

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DuelingFanjo · 26/07/2013 10:48

and yes, that they were all made up the same, clearly couldn't play the instruments so were there as 'eye candy' etc

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LeGavrOrf · 26/07/2013 10:54

And they were dead eyed.

I loved them when I was a kid for the sheer glamour but I think it's shite now.

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DuelingFanjo · 26/07/2013 10:54

this is interesting.

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LeGavrOrf · 26/07/2013 11:01

Thread yesterday about it also with a link to the uncut video which shocked me. www.mumsnet.com/Talk/_chat/1810620-blurred-lines-role-reversal-video-is-this-one-any-better

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flipchart · 26/07/2013 11:08

mardyBra,
There is no reason why you shouldn't find it on youtube.
It's had millions of hits, there is an uncensored version and there is a skit that Robin Thicke, Pharall and T.I. do of themselves.

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myalias · 26/07/2013 11:23

The women in the 'Addicted to Love' video were strong, glamorous and sexy which at that time 80's career woman was all about the red lipstick and dressing head to toe in black.
I was listening to the Trevor Nelson show last week and Robin Thicke was his star guest. Trevor asked him about the song and what did his wife think about the video. Bizzarely his wife came up with the video idea and to shoot it like a magazine cover, she even chose the dark haired girl (who happened to be on a magazine cover at the time) to star in it.

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DuelingFanjo · 26/07/2013 11:23

I just wonder if we have moved forward at all if the Robin Thicke video (and lyrics) is seen as acceptable and if we have people saying that sexual harrassment and molestation were ok 30 years ago because times were different.

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MardyBra · 26/07/2013 11:29

I've found it now thanks flip.

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MardyBra · 26/07/2013 11:33

I haven't thought about the Robert Palmer video for years, but at the time I remember thinking the women's deadpan expressions were them being cool rather than robotic.

Yes, in retrospect, I can see that the RP video was sexist. The Robin Thicke song and video is off the scale though.

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DuelingFanjo · 26/07/2013 11:53

another blog about 'addicted to love'

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DuelingFanjo · 26/07/2013 11:55
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LeGavrOrf · 26/07/2013 12:06

I remember Roxy Music had a record sleeve with a couple of naked women on it, I saw it at a friend'/a house as a kid and was shocked.

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NiceTabard · 26/07/2013 18:52

I think there were people at the time who said the robert palmer video was sexist - just not many and in pre internet age non mainstream views tended not to get heard really.

No idea who or what this thicke person is and not sure I want to Confused

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