Beyaz, “Beyond Birth Control”
When one actually watches carefully the imagery of this commercial, it is probably one of the most evil things on television.
I first saw this commercial a few months ago, but perhaps only after 6 or 7 times did I actually pay attention to how it was trying to market. The tagline of Bayer’s birth control product Beyaz is “Beyond Birth Control.” It seems that the idea is that this little pill purchases for you the opportunity cost of your reproductive looseness. In other words, Beyaz allows you to go to grad school, have a significant other(s), take a picnic by a waterfall, vacation in Paris, or the penultimate – home ownership. With disturbing vacuity and opacity the drug makes deceptive promises of life fulfillment through blocking new life. The implicit message is that pregnancy/motherhood will take away your happiness, joy, dreams, and idols.
I don’t come down very hard on birth control like some do within evangelicalism. The matter is complex and nuanced and I think a lot of arguments on both sides are a bit over-simplistic. However, a good friend of ours has a saying that I think has a lot of merit, “my womb is not my own.” Our culture loves control and loves its idols. I thought this was an interesting slice of our culture and I would wager that the ad is rather subversively effective for Bayer.