Now, the brand is extending its exclusionary approach to cast members of ludicrously successful reality shows.
Abercrombie has offered Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino of MTV’s The Jersey Shore ‘a substantial payment’. It’s not that the brand wants to thank Sorrentino for making sure that their logos are front-of-mind among the show’s eight million viewers. Nope—they want him to stop wearing A&F goods, and to don ‘an alternate brand’ for his on-screen exploits.
‘We are deeply concerned that Mr. Sorrentino's association with our brand could cause significant damage to our image,’ an Abercrombie spokesperson said in a statement distributed yesterday. ‘We understand that the show is for entertainment purposes, but believe this association is contrary to the aspirational nature of our brand, and may be distressing to many of our fans.’
The release went on to say that A&F extended its offer to Jersey Shore cast members beyond Sorrentino, and that they ‘are urgently awaiting a response.’
Frankly, a brand can’t have stores in every other mall in America and expect its most avid customers to be the sorts of fashion sprites who maintain street style blogs. People don’t wear logo tees and sweats because they saw somebody on TV do it; the TV stars wear such items because they too are consumers to whom a brand’s ‘aspirational nature’ appeals.
Classism shouldn’t pay. So, Sitch: do you want to find another brand, a la Jay-Z re: Cristal? Or take the money and shop... at Abercrombie?