So they won’t get their hands on women’s uteruses—in a legislative sense—politicians can now control their very own womb toy.
The Variable launched "Woombies," plush toys in the shape of a uterus that "give anti-choicers what they've always felt entitled to: a womb they can exert total control over!"
Each Woombie costs $19.99, all proceeds benefit Planned Parenthood, and when you buy a Woombie, a second one is sent to a politician of your choice. Woobies can also be purchased in bundles specifically for certain groups of politicians. Hateful Eight packs send Woombies to the eight Republican women who voted against codifying Roe v. Wade. The Dirty Dozen goes to 12 politicians leading the charge against reproductive rights. And the Extreme Court Bundle is for the conservative members of the Supreme Court.
Promoting the website is a social media and digital campaign—and a 15-foot uterus that was placed across from the Washington Monument during the Women's March earlier this month.
Click the images to enlarge:
" 'Protesting is hard. Woombies are soft.' That's the way the idea was first pitched to me," says Joe Parrish, partner and chief creative officer of The Variable. "And I thought it was genius. Woombies lets people be as involved, or as not involved, as they want to be. They can buy one and put it on their desk as a symbol of solidarity, or they can take it to a march as a symbol of protest. Woombies make it easy for people looking for something to do, to do something."
Promo videos take place in a home shopping channel setting, the Dystopian Shopping Network. Women sell Woombies with acerbic wit coupled with hardened facts like a nationwide abortion ban would increase the maternal mortality rate for Black women by 33 percent and, since 2017, 90 state reps have been accused of sexual misconduct.
The campaign is deeply personal for Sarah Mosseller, associate creative director at The Variable. A decade ago she went to her doctor to discuss having her tubes tied to her ovaries removed. She was turned away, and 10 years later was diagnosed with breast cancer that fed on reproductive hormones.
"Bald, bloated, and beleaguered after 16 rounds of chemo and 33 rounds of radiation, I sat in yet another doctor's office asking for them to remove my ovaries," Mosseller tells Muse. "I thought because my oncology doctors said it was necessary for my survival, and because at 34 years old no one could tell me I was 'too young' to make such a choice, that this would be easy. I was wrong. I was turned away again because, as inconceivable as it is, an unconceived child is more important than my life."
To date, 150 Woombies have been sent to both anti-choice politicians and allies and $3,500 raised for Planned Parenthood.
"Every part of the campaign was built to take advantage of the inherent tension between a funny stuffed toy and the horrifying consequences of a bad decision," says Parrish. "The writing in the QVC spots is biting and eye-opening and terrifying, and just when it feels like it has to be made up, the original sources are cited. We want to reach people who are potentially open to rethinking their position. Woombies are our Trojan horse. A way of delivering hard facts in a soft way."
Agency: The Variable
Sarah Mosseller, Associate Creative Director
Kristen Dunseith, Art Director
Katie Blechinger, Junior Copywriter
Hannah Jew, Group Planning Director
Kate Fenstermacher, Associate Director of Delivery
Jessy Magor, Senior Social Strategist
Corrine Figliuzzi, Senior Social Analyst
Carly MacFarland, Social Manager
Abi Smith, Copy Editor
Joe Parrish, CCO
Matt Cook, Creative Director
Matteson Fields, Associate Creative Director
Gary Bostwick, Associate Creative Director
Scott Moody, Associate Director of Community & Media Relations
Curtis Kiser, Senior Art Director
Chris Vernon, Art Director