The image: Kids grow up so fast. Dakota Fanning, the precocious child actress who is now 17, is mired in a grown-up controversy over her ad for Marc Jacobs' new perfume "Oh Lola." (See the full image below.) Designed to evoke a "contemporary Lolita," according to Jacobs, the ad features the former Cat in the Hat star in a nude-colored dress suggestively resting an over-sized bottle of Oh, Lola! between her upper thighs. While the U.K. has banned the "sexually provocative" ad, charging that it "could be seen to sexualize a child. Coty Inc., the firm that owns Jacobs' perfume line, balks at the "too racy" slams, arguing that the ad "is provoking but not indecent."
The reaction: Why would Jacobs "even want to be 'provoking' when it comes to sexualizing a kid"? says Jamie Peck at Crushable. The explicit Lolita reference is extremely inappropriate. I disagree, says Kelly Schrempf at Hollywood. Fanning is 17. Grown women openly drooled over Twilight's Taylor Lautner when he was the same age, and no one asked him to put a shirt on. Perhaps people are "just having a hard time coming to terms with the fact" that Dakota Fanning is not a little girl anymore. I'm often "unsettled by the fashion industry's obsession with youth," says Ashley Cardiff at The Gloss. So I'm glad the ad was banned in the U.K. But let's be honest: By American standards, this image is par for the course. Judge for yourself: