Say goodnight, angels: The 2019 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show has officially been canceled.
Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President of L Brands (Victoria’s Secret’s parent company) Stuart B. Burgdoerfer made the official announcement in the company’s Q3 2019 earnings call Thursday.
“We think it’s important to evolve the marketing of Victoria’s Secret, that is happening in certain respects now and I think there will be more to come. If that continues to get evaluated, again, we believe the most important thing is the quality of the merchandise itself,” said Burgdoerfer when asked about the possibility of a 2019 show.
He went on to explain that there wasn’t a “specific material impact on short-term sales” in response to the airing of the fashion show and that, in past tense, “it was a very important part of the brand building of this business and was an important aspect of the brand and a remarkable marketing achievement.”
“And with that said, we’re figuring out how to advance the positioning of the brand and best communicate that to customers,” he said, before concluding the line of questioning about the show by saying the brand has “nothing” on the docket in terms of a show for the 2019 holiday season.
Prior to this confirmation, rumors had been circulating about the show’s cancellation for months. Several regular Victoria’s Secret models spoke out about the news earlier this year, long before it was confirmed by the brand or the brand’s parent company.
Model Georgia Fowler told the Australian Daily Telegraph in October that “it’s disappointing it’s not going to happen this year,” while longtime ambassador for the brand Shanina Shaik bluntly told the Daily Telegraph in July that the show wouldn’t be happening.
Victoria’s Secret has been under fire in recent years for not acclimating to changing cultural norms. As Vox put it in 2018, as “attitudes around the sexualization of women and evidence that its traditional hyper-sexy brand image may not resonate with consumers anymore, Victoria’s Secret has for the most part declined to make meaningful changes.” The publication also noted several scandals behind the scenes of the show.
The event has also never been inclusive to all body types, and “women don’t want to be viewed as stereotypical sexy supermodels buying lingerie just to impress men,” a retail analyst told The New York Times in 2018.
It’s unclear if the show will air again in the future, but this is the first time since the show’s origination in 1995 that it hasn’t happened. L Brands and Victoria’s Secret’s press department did not respond to requests for comment.
Looks like they’ll have to find another way of showing off the Fantasy Bra.
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