KMart generated buzz with two commercials with clever word play: their “Big Gas Savings” and “Ship My Pants” clips. But a parody commercial, which makes a play on the “N-word” using the term “knickers,” is perceived by many as more offensive than hilarious.
It doesn’t merely poke fun at a racist moniker, but it makes light of controversial stereotypes about black people. According to some, the man bragging about his “work knickers,” carries the sting of the slavemaster mentality; a woman who loves her “lazy knickers” perpetuates the stereotype that black people don’t work hard; a man says he purchased “dancing knickers” before doing a full on shuck-and-jive; and finally, a black man represents the hip hop rendering of the word saying “knickers, please.” The hashtag for the campaign is #shipmyknickers.
While the commercial is clearly in jest, not everyone is laughing at its use of stereotypes and tongue-and-cheek play on the N-word. What are your thoughts, Clutchettes?