Beauty and the Bureaucrats |

Barred Refaeli: Muppet Ad Deemed Too Racy for Prime Time TV

Mixed reactions in world media to Israeli TV watchdog's move: Some see it as prudish, others express solidarity.

new-hdc-logo
Haaretz
new-hdc-logo
Haaretz

A TV ad featuring supermodel Bar Rafaeli and a muppet has been banned from daytime broadcast in Israel.

The state Second Authority for Television and Radio has banned daytime and prime time airing of a suggestive TV ad starring Refaeli and rock 'n' roll muppet Red Orbach, insisting the commercial has "too many sexual insinuations," reports the Walla! news site.

The story has been picked up internationally, leading naturally to the question: Is this good for Israel's image?

Britain's most popular website, Mail Online, seemed to take the mickey out of Israel for acting like an old prude, headlining its story, "Bar Refaeli's new steamy commercial gets banned in her native Israel for suggesting she had sex with a puppet."

The ad for Hoodies Underwear starts out with a visibly impressed, presumably post-coitus Refaeli lying under the bedsheet next to the muppet, who says, "It can't get any better than this. Or can it?" Then two more Refaelis appear in bed with him, and the three barely-dressed Bars take him on a fantasy tour: sudsing down his car, feeding him grapes in a jacuzzi, and playing strip poker with him until he wakes up from the dream, only to see Refaeli appear in the bedroom closet. "You just can't get enough of me," says Red, as Bar winks at the camera.

No more will this ad be shown on Israeli TV before 10 P.M., the Second Authority ruled at the beginning of the week.

Good for the Jewish state, or bad? Good, says the fashion magazine Elle: "To be perfectly honest, the commercial has all of the grace and sexual empowerment of a GoDaddy ad. (Yes, that's sarcasm.) So we have to side with the Israeli government on this one. After all, the council didn't even fully ban the ad, and the prime time airwaves could certainly do without it (as could all of us, really)."

No reaction was forthcoming from U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry by press time.

Bar Refaeli, right, and rock 'n' roll muppet Red Orbach star in an ad for Hoodies.Credit: YouTube screengrab

Click the alert icon to follow topics:

Comments

SUBSCRIBERS JOIN THE CONVERSATION FASTER

Automatic approval of subscriber comments.

Subscribe today and save 40%

Already signed up? LOG IN

ICYMI

Crowds at Israel's Ben-Gurion International Airport, in April.

U.S. Official: West Bank Entry for Palestinian Americans Unrelated to Israeli Visa Waivers

Haaretz spoke with several people who said they had fled Ukraine, arrived in Israel,  and were asked to undergo DNA tests in order to establish paternity.

'My Jewish Grandmother Has a Number on Her Arm, Why Does Israel Greet Me This Way?'

FILE PHOTO: A Star of David hangs from a fence outside the dormant landmark Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh's Squirrel Hill neighborhood in 2021.

American Judaism Is in Decline. That's Great News for American Jews

People taking part in the annual "March of the Living" to commemorate the Holocaust, between the former death camps of Auschwitz and Birkenau in Oswiecim, Poland, four years ago.

It’s Not Just the Holocaust. Israel Is Failing to Teach the History of the Jews

 A Jewish cemetery in Warsaw, Poland.

Israel and Poland Fight Over History, Truth - and Israeli Students

A collage of the Bentwich family throughout the generations.

Unique Burial Plot in Jerusalem Tells Story of Extraordinary Jewish Dynasty