An advertisement for Bravo’s new series “Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce” has been banned from city buses and subways in Los Angeles and New York because it’s considered “inappropriate,” an individual with knowledge of the situation told TheWrap.
The print ad (shown below) features the show’s lead actress Lisa Edelstein holding up her ring finger — as she might her middle finger — with the tag line, “Go Find Yourself.”
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Dom Camera & Company, a New York-based advertising agency which acts as Bravo’s out-of-home media buyer, submitted the ad in September to CBS Outdoor, the company responsible for placing advertisements on subways and buses in both cities.
Metro Los Angeles immediately declined the ad, the insider said.
New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority initially approved the image, the insider added. But a short time later, the MTA changed its mind and declined the ad saying it “implied inappropriate creative,” because of the tongue-in-cheek nod to the F-word, according to the New York Post.
However the MTA tells TheWrap otherwise. “We never received the ad,” said MTA spokesman Kevin Ortiz. The MTA also insisted that they couldn’t reject an ad that they never saw.
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Still, Dom Camera, managing partner of Dom Camera & Company, disputes the MTA’s claims.
“The creative for Bravo’s scripted series, ‘Girlfriends’ Guide To Divorce’ was approved by CBS Outdoor on September 24, shortly thereafter I was told the NY MTA rejected the ad and deemed it inappropriate. They would only consider it if we provided alternative creative,” Camera said in a statement issued to TheWrap.
However, Bravo declined to change the artwork.
“The ad is an accurate representation of the show’s humor, attitude and story, so rather than ‘divorce’ this creative concept — we found alternative sites for it to run in NY and LA,” a Bravo spokesperson said in a statement to TheWrap Sunday.
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Those alternate sites include tour buses and phone kiosks in both cities.
Meanwhile, Caruso Properties which owns The Grove and Americana shopping centers in Los Angeles and Glendale, California, declined the ad as well, the insider revealed.
As for Metro, this is not the first time the agency has banned an ad for a high-profile TV series. As TheWrap previously reported, Metro removed “Red Band Society” bus ads in September after getting what it called an “earful” from the community over “offensive language.” The ad in question was part of a national campaign in which Octavia Spencer‘s character was referred to as a “Scary Bitch.”
Also read: Metro Los Angeles Removes 'Red Band Society' Bus Ads for 'Offensive Language'
“Girlfriends’ Guide To Divorce” is Bravo’s first scripted series, and follows Abby (played by “House” alum Edelstein), the author of a self-help book series who’s hiding her separation from her husband from the public. Starting her life over again as a single woman in her 40s, she finds that advice from divorced friends leads to startling new adventures.
The series is based on Vicki Iovine’s “Girlfriends’ Guide…” book series.
“Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce” premieres on Tuesday, Dec. 2 at 10 p.m. ET on Bravo.
Below is an image of the controversial ad: