A new Durex condoms commercial airing on British television shows a same-sex couple in a moment of intimacy. The ad entitled "Let's Not Go Back To Normal" encourages condom usage and eliminating associated stigma, and is part of the company's "Challenge the Norms" campaign begun earlier this year.
"For too long, normal just wasn't good enough," a voice says as the ad opens. "Normal was making rubbish excuses for not wearing a condom. Normal was shaming women for even carrying one. Normal was one million needless STIs. Every. Single. Day."
The narration continues while people representing a spectrum of gender and sexual identities appear intermittently on screen.
"So, this is a call to arms, legs, bums and private parts," the narration continues. "Let's not go back to normal. The world has never been so ready for change. So, let's all change it for the better. For each other."
Towards the end of the commercial, a gay couple are seen together on a bed, slowly caressing each other in one of the commercial's more memorable moments.
"Everyone is talking about going back to normal," said Ben Wilson, Global Category Director, Sexual Wellbeing, at Durex parent company Reckitt Benckiser Group, in a statement. "But nobody is questioning whether we should. Truth is, 'normal' is rooted in a lot of outdated conventions and when it comes to sex, we can do better."
Elliot Harris, RB Global Executive Creative Director at the company's creative agency Havas London, agrees saying the campaign "might be the most important piece of work" the company has ever created.
The ad concludes by noting that "it's been pretty weird lately" and challenging viewers to effect real change when restrictions are lifted.
"So, when it's time to get back out on the streets and jump back in the sheets, let's not go back to normal," the narrator observes as the commercial ends. "Let's have better, safer sex. For everyone. Forever."
The complete Durex commercial can be viewed below.