Justin Bieber’s Calvin Klein campaign ads topped the Viral Video Chart last week, which should surprise absolutely no-one.
The 20-year-old singer is the latest poster boy for the lifestyle brand.
Following his unveiling on January 6 as the new face and body of “Calvin Klein Jeans [and Underwear] Spring 2015,” the ads have been viewed over 20 million times and generated more than 49,000 Facebook interactions, according to Ad Age’s Viral Video Chart.
In addition to the smoking hot black and white print ad shots starring Justin and the model Lara Stone, the data includes views for two videos, Facebook teasers and user-generated content.
Inevitably, the 15-second spot of the Canadian, wearing amply filled out white underwear, performed better than the 30-second spot of the shirtless, jeans-clad heartthrob drumming (spoofed brilliantly here), before petting Lara and delivering the signature “my calvins.”
Reasons for the viral status of the Klein ads are two-part. Bieber’s army of (mostly) teen and older females kept online hits pulsing, as did photoshopping questions that sparked after observers noticed the singer had less pelvic hair in video footage than the print ads.
While airbrushing here or there is common in underwear ads and all sort of photo shoots, the Klein campaign received a nasty missive when a previously unknown website added fuel to the photoshopping talk by posting a “fake as hell” GIF of the Biebs, and claiming it was an “unretouched” shot from his shoot.
It wasn’t. But it took a cease and desist letter from the singer’s lawyers and the threat of a defamation lawsuit before the website posted a retraction online, admitted the GIF was a photoshop, removed it, and wrote an apology.
All of the above, plus spoofs from various personalities including Conan O’Brien, Miley Cyrus, and Ellen DeGeneres, kept the Justin Bieber featuring Calvin Klein campaign at the top of the Viral Video Chart.
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) January 12, 2015
Despite the controversies, most people with working eyes seem to have accepted that the so-called “unretouched” GIF was a fake. How it fooled anyone in the first place remains a mystery.
Meanwhile, following DeGeneres’ surprise photoshop, Justin posted a photo to his Fahlo account, captioned “Stay ready.”
The image shows the platinum blonde singer looking into what appears to be a backstage stage-mirror. It has touched off rumors among fans that he could be appearing on a future episode of The Ellen Show, given that Bieber has been on the show many times over the years.
Time will tell. But if the Biebs does appear on Ellen, it will be his first talk show appearance since early 2013. Has anything happened to the Pop/R&B sensation since then?
[Images via Calvin Klein]