Bra makers have long chafed under the advertising restrictions imposed by the National Association of Broadcasters Code Authority, which must approve all television commercials. The Code Authority decrees that a live model in a bra commercial must be fully clothed and if a mannequin is used, it must be headless or armless—preferably both. In an era of explicitness—and occasionally bralessness—some bra makers are eager to push the product beyond a plastic torso or levitating apparition. Lately they have been pressing the code to its literal limit, with some strange results.

A new commercial for Playtex Living Bras opens with the...

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