Saturday, 5 April 2008

UNDERCOVER REPORT

I intend to make none of my usual half-hearted apologies for today's post, since I am (a) bringing information of vital importance to my readers, and (b) quoting that widely-read and much-respected journal...


Which?
have been looking into pants following the uncovering of that brief complaint by TV's Jeremy Paxman.

What's come out in the wash is that tests uphold M&S, but (or butt) do nothing to support the reputation of Calvin Klein whose pants are four times as expensive as Marks & Sparks and yet, apparently, are, well, pants!

In case it slipped by you, here's the low-down...

M&S pants top our briefs encounter
But Calvin Klein bottom in Which? test

Which?
has rigorously tested some of the UK’s most popular men's underwear following TV presenter Jeremy Paxman’s much publicised gripe over Marks & Spencer (M&S) pants. The Newsnight host hit the headlines when he complained that M&S pants no longer provided ‘adequate support’. So Which? decided to pitch M&S against Tesco, Asda and designer brand Calvin Klein. We found that Calvin Klein’s Body trunks came out badly for pilling (bobbling), despite costing £20 a pair - while Asda’s, costing £1.75, were the least susceptible to this.

Fading and shrinking

Our scientists washed and tumble-dried the pants to see whether they kept their shape and colour. M&S pants, at £5 a pair, kept their colour the best after ten washes while Asda’s and Calvin Klein’s faded the most. The M&S trunks didn’t shrink too badly, but Calvin Klein’s shrank a lot in parts – particularly in the leg. However, Calvin Klein might pass the Paxman test for ‘gusset anxiety’, as the Tesco and Asda gussets shrank the most.

Gusset anxiety

Overall, Calvin Klein was ranked lowest, while M&S came out top. Despite this, an industry insider, told us: 'There’s a trend across industry for cheaper cotton, so I can understand how Jeremy feels.’

It's obvious from these findings why CK have to employ so many skimpily-clad models (see gratuitous illustration below) in order to sell their fast-fade, quick-shrink skivies...


I suppose this is one way of getting people with a horror of heights to take a turn on the London Eye, but what really intrigues me is just how this photo was taken...

I mean, did the ten lads queue up to buy their tickets dressed (or undressed) like this, or is there a great pile of jeans, t-shirts, socks and shoes on the other side of the pod? And were they already kitted out with their CKs before getting on the Eye or did they have to change out of their M&S knickers on the way up?

And, supposing the photograph was taken when the wheel was at the height of its revolution - and bearing in mind how long photographers always take - did they have to rehearse much to find out how long it would take getting it off and getting it on again?

Not only that, but how many people are actually in that pod? Well, obviously the ten models and the photographer (with lights and reflectors), but who else? CK's brand manager? The advertising agency's account manager? The artistic director? Plus, of course, assistants to all the aforementioned, wardrobe, hair and make-up and, doubtless, London Eye security staff...

I'm not sure that we haven't exposed some serious health and safety issues here...

6 comments:

Boll Weavil said...

O dear, not ANOTHER report about pants AND with an accompanying picture... I recently purchased some Calvin Klein pans because I was fed up of Pierre Cardin running to holes all the time.I didn't pay £20 because I got them off the net. They arrived in nice individual boxes, made in China.I began to have my doubts, so I read the label which I reproduce for you here in all its glory !
COTTON SPANDEX Soft mess and Comfort. All apparel and home textiles are eertified as cotton assuring you the ultimate in durability.machine wash,dry promptly,tunble dry warmiron.

I think old Calvin should buy a dictionary with his profits...in the meantime, if you want me to model them for you, I'll be happy to send in a picture before they, and I, start to fade away...

LisaH said...

At last, one of your speciality blogs.
I'm sure Boll Weavil would be an improvement on the rather insipid models used in the photo (you can't even see the pants they are meant to be modelling in a few cases).
Bring back Freddie Ljunberg and David Beckham - these guys are pants by comparison.

Suzy said...

A lot of people for one small Pod - not to mention all the crates of fruit + veg needed to fill out the Pants !!

Boll Weavil said...

Lisah, youre faith in my appearance is touching.I'm more than happy to go ahead with my original plan to model the Calvin Klein pans. Unfortunately for all interested readers, the egg pan is sufficent on its own for the requisite degree of modesty to be maintained....

Brian Sibley said...

GILL comments...

Mr Sibley

You have put me in an impossible position. When the Duchess recovered consciousness [thanks to the sal volatile I keep ever about my person] she demanded that I define 'gusset anxiety'. Not only is this difficult for any woman, it is impossible for a gentlewoman even to consider the meaning of this unfortunate phrase.

I am in despair.

David Weeks said...

To alleviate the qualms of the duchess ~ I am sure that it was a typo . . . it should have read 'russet anxiety' as in a threatened shortage of that delicious type of apple.