Johnnie Walker introduces new 'Jane Walker' bottles

01 March 2018 - 08:36 By AFP Relaxnews
Jane Walker.
Jane Walker.
Image: Johnnie Walker/ AFP

Scotch whisky brand Johnnie Walker is jumping on the rising feminist movement, hoping to cash in on the current climate by turning their iconic Striding Man Johnnie into Jane.

For the first time in more than a century, the brand's iconic Striding Man will be replaced by his female counterpart, 'Jane Walker,' depicted in a distinctly curvaceous silhouette with top hat, tuxedo jacket, jodhpurs and riding boots. 

The marketing stunt is meant to coincide with Women's History Month and International Women's Day celebrations, which kickstart next month. 

To tie the two concepts together, the brand tries to highlight the roles of key women in the development of the brand, including Elizabeth Walker, wife of founder John Walker, and the company's 12 female blenders. 

"Introducing Jane Walker, our new icon that celebrates progress in Women's Rights. With every step, we all move forward," reads a Twitter announcement. 

It didn't take long for the Twittersphere to respond, with some commentators applauding the move, and several others blasting it. 

"I can't even enjoy scotch anymore without being mansplained and condescended by nitwits?! No thanks," reads one tweet. 

"Sorry... exactly what progress has been made? Pay equality? Political Equality? Reproductive control? Hmmm...But thank GOD there's a scotch with a lady on the bottle. Now I feel equal. Thanks."

Another woman pointed out that other brands have tried and failed - spectacularly - in trying to cash in on the feminist movement. 

"I'm not remotely intimidated by Scotch, but I'll be steering clear of this. It's as condescending as those foolish Doritos and Bic pens for "ladies." You may want to consider what happened in those cases." 

The tweet refers to a runaway story about PepsiCo looking into developing Doritos for women (which eventually was debunked as inaccurate) and Bic pens designed for the female hand - both of which were skewered on the Internet. 

Recently, KFC also tapped country crooner Reba McEntire to become the brand's first female colonel in an ad campaign in which she suits up in his trademark white suit, moustache and black tie. 

The Johnnie Walker Black Label The Jane Walker Edition will be available in March, with $1 from every sale going to charities that champion women's causes.