My Favorite Lesbian Rom-Com of 2016 is This Commercial For Disposable Razors

There’s a new lesbian rom-com out there that gets my little gay heart fluttering, and no, you can’t watch it in a movie theater. But you can probably catch it upwards of 16 times in a row when trying to stream something on the CW’s website.

Indeed, I was introduced to the greatest lesbian rom-com of 2016 whilst trying to rewatch the season two finale of Jane The Virgin. Normally, I multitask during the 250 commercials the CW site tries to make you watch, but something happened to catch my attention and set off my Gay Detective senses this time: this BIC Soleil commercial for disposable razors. You may be familiar with Caroline and Tarah, the women of the Payless BOGO commercial series who are most definitely in a complicated relationship according to my very close, very queer reading of those shoe commercials. They’re not the only gal pals hidden in plain sight during commercial breaks.

In just 30 seconds, this commercial for BIC’s Shine razors tells a complex and beautiful narrative about two women falling in love and living their best damn lives. I shall break it down for you:

"I'm so silly...but also fabulous"

“I’m so silly… but also fabulous”

First, we meet Jen. I made that name up, but look at her. She looks like a Jen. Like any good rom-com protagonist, Jen is clumsy af but, like, super cute about it. She trips down stairs but still looks like she’s posing for a J.Crew catalogue when doing so. “Some days, my life feels like a blooper reel, but I stay sunny,” she muses. That’s probably her Tinder bio, too.

"We're so silly...together!"

“We’re so silly… together!”

At this point, we meet Olivia. Now, it might look like Olivia and Jen are old friends who have known each other for a while, but that’s not the case at all. This is actually the first time Olivia and Jen have met. This is their meet-cute. They’re both trying to catch a bus as it speeds away, laughing, because everything seems funny when you’re falling in love at first sight. They miss the bus and reach for each other. There’s an instant connection, an instant comfort. It’s a classic meet-cute, and they both know it, because Olivia and Jen are both fans of romantic comedies and realize they are suddenly living in one. (Jen’s favorite rom-com is 13 Going On 30, and Olivia’s favorite is Imagine Me & You, a disagreement that will eventually be the cause of their first fight.)

Screen Shot 2016-07-08 at 3.01.45 PM

Hoping to keep the magic of their meet-cute alive, Jen invites Olivia to the farmers’ market with her. When Jen’s bag rips as she’s filling it with oranges (oranges she will later feed, in slices, one by one, to Olivia), Olivia exclaims, her surprise effectively communicating the sentiment “holy shit, our meet-cute is still happening.” There’s more arm touching, more laughing, more rom-com vibrance.

Screen Shot 2016-07-08 at 3.04.30 PM

Then there’s a little description of the actual product this commercial is peddling, but that’s of little importance. Jen notes that she gets a “sunny feeling” from the feel of these razors in the morning, but I think it’s safe to assume that “sunny feeling” is coming from the feel of Olivia’s hand on the side of her face in the morning. The commercial ends with the BIC Soleil Shine slogan: “Make your own sun,” a phrase that will be repeated in Jen and Olivia’s wedding vows. Caroline and Tarah of the Payless BOGO commercials might be going through a rough patch, but Jen and Olivia look blissfully in love. I’m gonna need BIC to drop several more commercials featuring these lovebirds.

BIC also released a French version of the commercial, which is somehow gayer:

This whole razor saga begs the age-old question: Wouldn’t it be nice if rom-coms about two women falling in love were as pervasive and accessible as rom-coms about straight people? And also longer than 30-second ad spots?

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Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya is a lesbian writer of essays, short stories, and pop culture criticism living in Miami. She is the assistant managing editor of TriQuarterly, and her short stories appear or are forthcoming in McSweeney's Quarterly Concern, Joyland, Catapult, The Offing, and more. Some of her pop culture writing can be found at The A.V. Club, Vulture, The Cut, and others. You can follow her on Twitter or Instagram and learn more about her work on her website.

Kayla has written 300 articles for us.

26 Comments

  1. This is amazing but also made so much better by the fact that it ISN’T a French version, it’s a French Canadian version. I got totally pleasantly surprised by that adorable accent

    Aaaaah French Canadian ladies <3 <3 <3

  2. Kayla, you’ve clearly discovered your life’s mission – finding gay ladies in advertisements. Between these and Erin’s “What I Wore…” articles, I feel like Autostraddle is really helping me live my best life.

  3. So the auto-captions for this one say:

    “yeah, some days my wife feels like a blooper reel”

    Which could easily be future Olivia talking about Jen’s rom-com clumsiness and cuteness. I maintain that YouTube’s auto-captioning algorithm is the biggest subtext shipper of us all :P.

  4. Also, I think Olivia is a friend of Caroline and Tarah Payless so they attend Olivia and Jen’s wedding and the incredible display of true love in front of them rekindles their relationship. They make out at the wedding, then of course go buy some shoes to celebrate, then have kinky shoe sex. And all is right with the world once again.

  5. I’ve been gay for so long and it never occurred to me to wish for a great lesbian rom-com. Wanted so desperately for Carol and other serious films to be my new Thing but in reality I am in my early twenties, I no longer feel the need for gloomy pining I felt in my teens I just want to LAUGH ABOUT SHIT. Is “Imagine Me & You” really the only one? Is it even that funny? I can’t remember.
    Why has film ft. girl-on-girl got to be so serious???
    Ooh remember Zooey Deschanel and Rashida Jones’ visually pleasing relationship in classic Paul Rudd film “Our Idiot Brother”? Anyone? THAT, please, for a whole 100 minutes. I don’t even need it to be sexy I just need it to be funny.

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