SapientRazorfish Celebrates ‘Real Moms’ for Dove Baby

By Erik Oster 

With Mother’s Day now a month away, SapientRazorfish launched a spot for Dove celebrating “Real Moms” with a look at how “Moms are redefining what it means to be a ‘good mom.'”

There’s a stay-at-home mother named Jazzie, a dance instructor and breakdancer named Elise, a cattle rancher named Cassidy, a tech manager and single mother named Seung, rock climber Jackie and transgender grad student Shea. Each has a different approach to parenting that shows the expansiveness of the “real mom” title.

“We are both his biological parents,” Shea explains. “You get people that are like, ‘What do you mean, you’re the mom?’ We’re like, ‘Yep, we’re both going to be moms.'”

Shea’s role in the ad has already generated both praise and controversy for Dove. While it’s perhaps a fair criticism that Shea’s partner seems to be the only mother in the ad not given a name or speaking lines, some viewers have taken offense that she refers to herself as a “mother” at all.

Adland’s “Dabitch” claims that “By applying it to a person who is the biological father of the child, Dove is not introducing us to #Realmothers, or broadening the word to include more people, Dove is helping to nullify what the word ‘mother’ actually means.”

A cursory glance at Twitter finds that others share that (and far more ugly) criticisms of the ad.

As Elise puts it at the beginning of the spot, “Most people feel like they have a license to tell you what they think it means to be a good mom.”

Update: A previous version of this story misattributed the campaign to Ogilvy.