Volkswagen’s tall woman ad: actually brilliant

“I like your tallness columns,” said my friend Scott, namer of this blog and avuncular uncle of the internet. “What do you think of the new tall lady dating car advert?”

I heaved a sigh that fell messily somewhere on my keyboard in a “Oh what?” sort of shape. I’d just posted my fortnightly Tall Girl Treat column on Domestic Sluttery – about body confidence. Tall women in adverts, beyond supermodels, generally don’t fare well. Like any unusual body shape they are a prop for a joke.

Actually, I adored this advert! Well done Volkswagen. Let’s have a look at it.

They’ve done so much right!

  • She has bothered to do her hair nicely.
  • She stands up straight.
  • She wears well-fitting clothes and nice heels.
  • SHE STANDS UP STRAIGHT.
  • She’s confident and, basically, a person.
  • I adored the bit where she is standing in front of a shop window smiling dreamily at heels before plumping resignedly for really boring flats.
  • AND the bit where she’s sharing an umbrella and constantly having her head bumped against the top of it.

The only thing that didn’t ring true was the look of disappointment and worry on her short dates’ faces when she climbed up a step, or met them. Way back in sixth form, my boyfriend of two years was much shorter than me. In punk-adoring Hampshire we wore similar clothes, had long hair and were frequently chatted up as a lesbian couple. Of the short men I have dated since, none of them has given a toss about my height. Funnily enough, it’s always been tall ones who’ve minded if I show up in heels.

Ultimately though, the girl in the advert found Her Person. And if they’re the right one, it doesn’t matter what height they are.