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Amish Killings Backdrop For 'Killer Value' Supermarket Ad

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Contextual ad buffoonery isn't limited to the online world as clearly illustrated by the placement of this ad, sent to us by FishNChimps, for online supermarket Sainsbury's on the page opposite a story in yesterday's edition of the UK's The Independent about the Amish killings. What's even more buffoonish about this particular instance of buffoonery is that the ad appeared on page three of a printed newspaper which, one would assume, gets seen by human editors before it goes to print. We're guessing there was a big, collective "oops" heard 'round The Independent offices once that issue hit the streets.

by Steve Hall    Oct- 4-06    
Topic: Newspaper, Strange, Worst



Loch Ness Monster Uses Toyota to Bait Stupid Joggers

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Here's a pretty funny ad in which a jogger becomes food for the Loch Ness Monster after wandering transfixed over to what looks like a deserted Toyota Vios. Everytime we see Nessie's head snap back after swallowing we can't help but smile a little. Hey, you didn't think monsters ate? Somebody's got to pay for all those free photo opps. Our favourite part is when it pokes its head back out of the water to neatly set the decoy back up. - Contributed by Angela Natividad

by Angela Natividad    Oct- 4-06    
Topic: Commercials, Good, Strange, Television



CEO Craps On Over-Worked Friends For Nokia

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Like a clumsy butcher trying to trim the fat off a mouse, this virally-intended hack job is supposed to promote the new Nokia E-Series Smartphone by enabling one to create a personalized message from an overbearing company CEO and send it to a friend. Trouble is, like that annoying "Head On. Apply directly to the forehead" commercial, this creation is so bad...uh...oh wait...we didn't finish reading the release. OK. There it is. "The jerkiness of the clip transitions add nicely to the impersonal irony of the message." There. That explains the hack editing job. Irony.

The clip is being seeded by Rubber Republic which tells us there's an NDA that prevents them from telling us who created the piece. Hmm. A smart move. Wait until if and when it becomes popular, then take all the glory. If it fails, face saved.

by Steve Hall    Oct- 4-06    
Topic: Online, Strange, Viral



France Considers Smoking Ban, Marketers Fear Loss of Hipsters

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If tobacco marketers thought France was a safe haven, they may be in for an attitude adjustment. A parliamentary panel in France is considering a ban on public smoking as soon as next year as well as considering "hermetically sealed" partitioned rooms for smokers complete with smoke-extraction systems and health rules.

This is a big deal considering the longtime French love affair with cigarettes, plus everyone knows that if the existentialist black-clad intelligentsia can't smoke in public venues then they stop being intelligentsia and start being, well, whiny kids. And apparently if you dig far enough into the French President's website, you'll find a photo of a younger Jacques Chirac with a cigarette dangling out of his mouth, channeling James Dean with all his might. We don't know why that's relevant to the story, but somehow it just is.

more »

by Angela Natividad    Oct- 4-06    
Topic: Trends and Culture



'Friday Night Lights' Shows Promise, Heart

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Europe loves futbol. America love football. Both games bring out competitive spirit and national patriotism. After viewing NBC's airing of Friday Night Lights, we feel we have to say never before has a TV show done such a wonderful job illustrating the love for and importance of a sport. A spin off of the 2004 Billy Bob Thornton movie of the same name based on H.G. Bissinger's book about the Odessa, Texas Permian High Panthers, the show brings to light small town America's love for the sport and the importance it plays in everyday life. While American soccer is alive an well on the fields of suburban America, that sport is unlikely to ever overtake the intensity of and love for good 'ol American football.

more »

by Steve Hall    Oct- 3-06    
Topic: Good, Opinion, Television



Rear Entry Advised For Family Planing

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Sometimes when a copywriter sits down to hone the craft, the intended meaning of the written words occasionally takes on something other than what was originally intended as in this directional sign in the UK's Northhampton General Hospital which reads, "Family planning advice. Use rear entrance."

by Steve Hall    Oct- 3-06    
Topic: Point of Purchase, Poster, Strange



Apply Directly to the Forehead. Again. Again. Again

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The Slug offers up a retrospective on this past Summer's inane Head On commercial and the media frenzy which ensued because of it. If you haven't seen the spot, it's the one that repeats, "Head On. Apply directly to the forehead," over and over and over but offers no actual statement as to what the product's purpose might be. Created completely without ironic insiderism, the commercial found itself the subject of many parodies, an MSNBC interview with Barbara Lippert in which she just won't shut up, coverage on NBC Nightly New with Brian Williams, again with Barbara Lippert, and, finally, a self-referential spoof created by the company itself. Still, no one knows what the hell the product is supposed to do. OK, yes, it's for headaches but they never say so. Witty.

As Brian Unger said on MSNBC, we shouldn't be surprised to hear "Bud, put it in your mouth" during the Super Bowl.

by Steve Hall    Oct- 3-06    
Topic: Commercials, Opinion, Strange, Trends and Culture, Video



Munchies, Brownies, Eyedrop Shelf Talkers Support Marijuana

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With help from Spinach (the agency, not the food), pro-marijuana group NORML placed shelf talkers in grocery stores directly adjacent to the very products seemingly associated with feeding yourself weed. Very nice media placement, indeed. See the creative here.

UPDATE: Spinach contacted us and would like to clarify that it was a local chapter of NORML they worked with and not the national, parent organization. The work was pitched on a project basis to a local chapter which decided to go with the campaign. Beyond that, Spinach informs us that even though the local chapter approved the work and decided to use the signs, the agency is now seeking verification the local chapter actually used the signs.

by Steve Hall    Oct- 3-06    
Topic: Good, Point of Purchase



With 'Huge Flavor' Comes Huge Portions

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While this Draft FCB Interactive-created site for Applebee's does a great job highlighting four new "Huge Flavor" dishes, the site (and every other American restaraunt site) should really be called Huge Portions since each featured dish looks like it could feed an entire family.

by Steve Hall    Oct- 3-06    
Topic: Good, Online



Free Hugs: He Said, She Said

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"No! No! No! No, it's not a clandestine promotion for the band Sick Puppies, " our intern yelled at us. "But, come one, a guy in a video with a sign that says Free Hugs roaming around in Sydney, Australia just hoping to brighten the world with nothing to gain from it?" we shouted back. "Yes you jaded idiot," screamed the intern, "Not everything on YouTube is trying to sell you something."

Not convinced, we stood up and asked, "What about this little gem on the Free Hugs website that says 'With grass root marketing tactics we promote products and ideas that are in line with our core values and the FREE HUGS message.'? I suppose that just means the products and ideas they claim to promote are love and goodwill?"

"Damn," the intern who was now jumping out of her seat bellowed. "You pompous, unfeeling know-it-all! Do you think the only thing every human being thinks about is getting the newest version of the iPod?" "Um, yes," we answered.

"Fuck you," she screamed as she turned and left, likely to go give someone a free hug.

by Steve Hall    Oct- 3-06    
Topic: Consumer Created, Trends and Culture, Video, Viral



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