News by Maddy Coffey

In a follow-up to Nike’s controversial “Dream Crazy” campaign last year that starred American activist and ex-American football player Collin Kaepernick, the brand has released a “Dream Crazier” campaign, tailored towards empowering sportswomen and narrated by one of the greatest athletes of all time, Serena Williams.  

In the wake of International Women’s Day, this ad is a perfect example of how leading brands can really hit the mark when it comes to social awareness and responsibility in the commercial sphere.   

The 90-second ad showcases iconic sportswomen in their element, with clips ranging from Simone Biles’ gymnastic prowess to Ibtihaj Muhammad’s fencing expertise. The advert’s illustration of such incredible and varied skill of numerous, worldwide sportswomen is underpinned by Serena William’s narration, which highlights the additional societal difficulties that female athletes in particular face and overcome.

“If we show emotion, we’re called dramatic,” Williams narrates. “If we want to play against men, we’re nuts. And if we dream of equal opportunity, we’re delusional. When we stand for something, we’re unhinged. When we’re too good, there’s something wrong with us. And if we get angry, we’re hysterical, irrational, or just being crazy… So if they want to call you crazy, fine,” she concludes. “Show them what crazy can do.”  

The campaign is part of “a yearlong journey [for Nike] to inspire the next generation of athletes.” As its first advert featuring a compilation of only female athletes, Nike certainly takes a step in the right direction and exhibits a welcome use of its status to raise awareness and empower women in an extremely male-dominated industry.  

While some brands show progress, disappointing stories elsewhere arise. It was recently revealed that a range of charity “Girl Power” T-shirts, worn by celebrities including spice Girl Emma Bunton and Holly Willoughby, were manufactured in a factory that stands accused of exploiting its workers. The £28 tees sold online by F=, a fashion brand that aims to promote female empowerment, serve as a stark reminder that, despite improvements, the industry still has a long way to go.

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