A Russian woman filed a lawsuit against Nike alleging a popular ad the sports apparel company posted online earlier this year is an attempt to “corrupt young women,” the Russian news site Moslenta reported this week.
“Women need to be beautiful, not made of ‘bruises and punches,’ ” said Marina Rybnikova, who appeared particularly offended about a section of the ad that showcases a female kickboxer.
“These things are simply incongruous, in my opinion,” continued Rybnikova, who is identified as a hypnotherapist in court documents obtained by another Russian news site Afisha Daily.
Rybnikova, who lives in Moscow, went on to note that her biggest fear pertaining to the ad is that it encourages young women to start fights.
“This would be considered normal because the ad, put out by such a famous company, says go for it,” she told Afisha, noting she’s seeking roughly $9,300 from Nike for “causing moral harm.”
The ad, which Afisha reports has been viewed more than 9 million times in the country, was released to critical acclaim in March. Fast Company called it “a welcome addition to the brand’s growing playlist of advertising celebrating a more-equal view of women in sport and society.”
The ad borrows its title from the popular Russian children’s song “What Are Little Girls Made Of?” and at the beginning, the young star of the ad sings the traditional lyrics in a theater packed with well-dressed older adults.
“Oh what, oh what, or what are our girls made of? They’re made of flowers and rings; gossip and marmalade. This is what our girls are made of,” she sings, before an ice skater opens the doors to the theater and inspires an alternative version of the song.
“They’re made of iron, self-dedication and battles,” the girl sings as the audience of adults uncomfortably shifts in their seats.
The girl reveals more alternative lyrics as other athletes appear, including a ballerina, a kickboxer, a skateboarder, a runner and more until, finally, one athlete kicks a ball to the young girl, who imagines herself a soccer player.
“You’re made of what you do,” the final text of the two-minute ad reads.
Rybnikova, who filed her lawsuit against Nike on Monday, also appeared to have a problem with that line, noting it misleads teens into thinking they can automatically become professional athletes.
“And 99 percent of us certainly won’t go pro,” she told Afisha Daily.
Nike, which tapped Wieden+Kennedy Amsterdam to make the ad, told the magazine on Monday that it wasn’t aware of the lawsuit.
(H/t: The Moscow Times)