Mum’s night off advert is such a washout

YOU LL have to forgive me, I m feeling a bit confused today. I know it s not humanly possible but I m becoming increasingly convinced that I ve gone back in time 50 years. You see, the other day, I was watching TV and there was an advert so out of date I

YOU'LL have to forgive me, I'm feeling a bit confused today.

I know it's not humanly possible but I'm becoming increasingly convinced that I've gone back in time 50 years.

You see, the other day, I was watching TV and there was an advert so out of date I can't believe anyone in 2006 would seriously think it was a good idea.

I'm not going to name the product or the company, because quite frankly I don't want to raise their profile any further but I will tell you they're a fast food chain.

They're currently running a promotion which features a range of delicious food with the added bonus of disposable plates and cutlery, all for a finger-licking £12.99.

The idea behind this ingenious offer is that no one has to wash up.

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Or, more precisely, that mums don't have to wash up, as this charming promotion is called the Mum's Night Off Bucket.

When I saw this advert, complete with shots of a jubilant mother chucking away the dirty crockery rather than slaving over a hot washing up bowl, I was literally lost for words.

Surely nobody nowadays actually thinks that domestic duties fall squarely on a mum's shoulders?

What's more worrying is that the fast food company is not the only one using this ridiculously outdated advertising ploy as a major supermarket chain is at it too.

We've all seen the adverts, now fronted by a former girl band lovely, with the slogan 'That's why mum's gone to (insert name of supermarket here)'.

I'm fairly certain that in a lot of houses it is still the mum who does the lion's share of the cooking and cleaning, and I want to make it very clear that I'm not making any judgments on people's domestic arrangements.

But surely we're all aware now that it doesn't necessarily have to be like that.

Fifty years ago, people genuinely believed that was the natural order of things, hence the advert on the right we dug out from our archives, which worked on the idea that a lady would simply love a labour-saving device for Valentine's Day.

(Note to all the men out there still unsure on this point: never, ever buy a woman "something for the house" for her birthday, Christmas, or any other festival, unless you want to end up having it thrown at you.)

Really, were the people behind the two "modern" advertising campaigns asleep through the entire feminist movement?

Women today are not the only ones in charge of domestic duties, and it is wrong, misleading and patronising to assume they are.

There are men who cook, clean, iron and sew, some because they believe in equality, and some simply because they have to.

We're all equally responsible for our homes and our personal lives, and it's about time advertising reflected this.