By Kate Rope
When I was in middle school, I remember giggling at a condom ad that ran on late-night radio. A couple would be about to, you know, do it! when Trojan Man would ride up on his horse and give the amorous pair a simple weapon in the war against sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancy: a small piece of latex. I can still remember the baritone voice-over announcing his arrival: “TROJAN MAN!” It seemed so mysterious and exciting! (Of course, I would later learn that the word exciting is not really the most apt one to use when describing a condom.)
My, how times have changed. Recently, MTV and Trojan launched a campaign, Evolve One, Evolve All, asking real people to upload their own videos about whether they use condoms and why (a grassroots ad campaign, if you will). If you post a video or comment on the site, up to five condoms are donated to Americans at risk. The plan is to donate one million condoms across the United States, but the larger plan is obviously to make talking about and using condoms a natural and normal part of sex in America.
Yes, it’s a lot less mysterious than Trojan Man, but that’s the point.