Tuesday ∗ 28 Feb 2012


this piece went up yesterday on that horrid cover for March that FHM Philippines was set on putting out. which it has pulled out, announced via that official statement posted on their website. that might be a success, but seriously? why is that official statement not a public apology? it needed to be an admission of having made a mistake, full stop.

instead it is this:


On Saturday, February 25, we uploaded the March issue with Bela Padilla on the cover on our Facebook page. Just hours later, a slew of comments on the supposed “racism” of the cover image and cover line flooded the magazine page, prompting the editorial team to re-examine the cover so that we could put into context its execution and assuage the concerns of our readers and non-readers as well who’ve weighed in on the issue.

pray tell, what was the context of this execution? what was in the head of each of those members of the FHM editorial team, that made them all think this concept was okay? this is the kind of concept that should’ve been shot down the moment someone articulated it. this photoshoot should not have seen the light of day.

We took all the points into consideration and have decided to take the side of sensitivity.

When FHM hits the stands in March it will have a different cover. We deem this to be the most prudent move in the light of the confusion over the previous cover execution.

ok two things. (1) the problem with this cover was not just execution. it was the concept behind it, the thinking that went into it, the lack of a critical sense of what this image pushes forth regardless of its intentions. (2) there was no “confusion” over this execution. in fact, this execution was so in our faces, there was no time to even ask the rhetorical exasperated question “WTF?” oh no, FHM editorial team, we were not at all confused about this cover, as we were angry and offended by it.

and that is what you fail to consider in this public-statement-in-place-of-an-apology-to-the-public. that is what you fail to consider even as you end with:

We apologize and thank those who have raised their points. We apologize to Bela Padilla for any distress this may have caused her. In our pursuit to come up with edgier covers, we will strive to be more sensitive next time.

you “apologize to those who raised their points”? what, you can’t even acknowledge what those points were, enough to mention offense and discrimination based on skin color? based on race? what, the rest of the Pinays who didn’t “raise points” don’t deserve an apology, too? it obviously isn’t clear to FHM’s editorial team that this cover encompasses all of us, because it is a a shameless display of one editorial team’s judgment and valuation of womanhood, of being Pinay, to be about skin color, if not race. in fact FHM should be apologizing to all women period, and we’re not even talking about the fact of their having objectified all of us in the past 12 years.

oh but to add insult to the injury that was no proper apology, it deemed it proper to apologize to Bela “for the distress it has caused her.” seriously? seriously. you acknowledge Bela’s distress but not ours? compare her distress to ours!

and then FHM Philippines ends their public statement with finally telling all of us what this cover was actually about: the “pursuit of edgier covers.” so the standard objectified woman’s body has ceased to be risky enough? has lost all edginess? is now normal? and the way to edginess is to juxtapose one woman’s objectified body against women with darker bodies, eyes looking away from the camera, silenced and blending into the background?

WTF, FHM! what.the.fuck.

and no, don’t mistake the expletive for confusion.

Posted in: arteng biswal, arts and culture, bayan, kalalakihan, kapitalista, kawomenan, kultura, magasin, media, produkto

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3 Comments/Pingbacks

  1. Andy
    March 9, 2012 at 12:56 am

    It is their confusion, not ours. I haven’t been this deeply saddened or angered about something of the same in a very, very long time.

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