Freudian nightmare or Crunch ad?

We’ve done flight attendants. We’ve done bikini-clad real-estate agents. So, to continue our current obsession with skimpy clothing, it’s time to look at these Crunch Fitness ads with people in their underwear. The health-club chain, known for classes like “Firefighter Workout,” “Cardio Striptease” and “Ruff Yoga” (which involves dogs), has a new campaign that features allegedly average people posing in their underwear and expressing their freedom. One ad shows some guy doing a karate kick and the line, “Be free like the Ninja.” (There’s even an in-your-underwear aerobics event scheduled in Chicago on Thursday.) The company, which has locations in L.A., New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Miami and Atlanta, is also waving initiation fees for anyone who brings in a pair of clean, new underwear, to be donated to Undershare, a non-profit dedicated to giving underwear to the needy. The whole thing reminds me of that old motherly advice about always wearing clean underwear in case you’re in a car accident. But really, isn’t underwear antithetical to “being free.

—Posted by Aaron Baar