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Don't Just Bury Sparky; Support Your Local Funeral Parlor

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We've seen a lot of odd funeral ads in our time (1, 2). But this trade ad, which first disgusted Adpulp (granted, for completely different reasons), is a new kind of freaky.

"Just imagine extending your cycle of service by adding pet loss memorial care," invites Matthews Cremation for its Faithful Forever effort.

Granted, death, like anything else (marriage, for example), is an industry whose players need to stay relevant with innovations or new streams of revenue, and we largely have ourselves to thank. Okay, our emotional attachment to Sparky is fair game. But it's still kind of weird to imagine the possibilities:

"One in three pregnancies results in a miscarriage. Cup the child in God's Hands (TM); cup the profits in yours."

"Celebrity deaths can hit homes hard. The Icon Altar brings solace for the passing of role models the world over."

"Invisible friends are people too. Remind aging patrons to see them off in style."

by Angela Natividad    Aug-28-07    
Topic: Magazine, Strange



Gigantic Anti-Drinking Ads Prove Funny As Hell When Drunk

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One of our zillions upon gazillions of Facebook buddies snapped a picture of himself beside this ad for After Too Many, that anti-irresponsible-drinking campaign by Grey, SF. Who'd have guessed it would make such a positive impact on (completely inebriated) college students?

The text reads, "My BEER told me to PUKE on my girlfriend." Monsieur Le Smirk at right seems close to doing just that. Yeah, it's all fun and games until it actually happens, right?

by Angela Natividad    Aug-27-07    
Topic: Cause, Outdoor



TrekStor Beats Blacks...Then Changes Product Name

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In an unfortunate and amusing product naming mishap, German company TrekStor had named one of its MP3 players i.beat blaxx. upon realizing the not so nice meaning of that product name, the company has since switched the name to a less culturally agitating and more simple blaxx. One wonders who looks at this stuff before it goes out?

by Steve Hall    Aug-27-07    
Topic: Brands, Strange, Worst



Nike Wants Equality For Female Athletes, Tell That to Marketers

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Rather than launching a multi-million dollar campaign urging people to treat female athletes with respect and to judge them simply on their athletic abilities, Nike could have a spent a lot less money simply by targeting marketers, many of whom love to focus on female athletes' physical qualities more so than their athletic abilities. Or to all those celebrity handlers who love to get their girls in a Maxim or FHM spread.

Oh, and is it just us or is their something weird about this image of the Nike Women website and accompanying text which reads, "Are you looking at my titles?" Nike coyly playing into the very thing their trying to dissuade?

by Steve Hall    Aug-27-07    
Topic: Campaigns, Celebrity, Good, Trends and Culture



Garfield Dubs Heineken Keg Ad Sexist, College Kids Don't Care

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Writing on Advertising Age today, Bob Garfield, returning from vacation on the Adriatic coast "where hordes of young Eastern European women sashayed to and fro in overflowing bikinis and high heels" reducing him to "a slack jawed cliché of arrested adolescence," wonders if the Heineken DraughtKeg ad is the most sexist beer ad ever created.

After wading through Garfield's extensive hyperbole and detailed analysis of this commercial, he concludes, writing, "Berlin Cameron United has essentially animated the "perfect woman" joke. Whether intentionally or out of pure animal instinct uncivilized by the most basic notion of respect, they have reduced half the world to a man-servicing beer tap."

Fair enough but we wonder if women sometimes inadvertently play right into this girl-as-boy-toy perception as this girl seemingly does here becoming a keg stand play-thing for a couple of guys who, yes, did run out and buy the new Heineken Draught Keg. Innocuous college antics? Or precursor to sexism?

by Steve Hall    Aug-27-07    
Topic: Commercials, Opinion, Trends and Culture



Time Warner Gives You Power to...Travel the World?

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Yo, dawg. Apparently, Time Warner's All the Best Package let's you get down, virtually, of course with your homies around the world. Us? If we want to swap gang signs with an Indian hottie, we'll just jump on a plane to do it.

by Steve Hall    Aug-27-07    
Topic: Bad, Commercials, Strange



Naked Muddy Models March For Dutch Mall

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The headline pretty much says it all because there isn't much else going on in this commercial for Dutch shopping Mall Batavia Stad. Our friends ovr at Fresh Creation don't see the connection. Neither do we. Do you? (Here's your chance to get all conceptual)

by Steve Hall    Aug-27-07    
Topic: Commercials, Racy, Strange



Serena Williams HP's New 'Get Personal' Spokesmodel

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Following Vera Wang, Jay-Z, Pharrell Williams, Mark Cuban, Mark Burnett and others, tennis champ Serena Williams is HP's nexy "achiever" in the company's "The Computer is Personal Again" campaign. Coming courtesy of Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, the campaign breaks today with a spot on USA, ESPN and online at SportsIllustrated.com, ESPN.com and Yahoo.

On August 31, a Serena-focused website will debut with all sorts of goodies like a blog, ring tones, videos, clothing and a documentary. Yes, it's all about achievement.

by Steve Hall    Aug-27-07    
Topic: Campaigns, Celebrity, Commercials, Video, Weblogs



Helvetica Isn't Just a Font; It's a Font Worthy of Awe

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Okay. Paying homage to a font is either acknowledging an undervalued aspect of the cultural exchange, or else very clever fucking marketing. But how many typefaces do you personally know that has its own documentary and a show at the MoMa?

Yes. We saw the latter with our own eyes. Gawk at the marvel that is the Chicago Public Library ad. Note the rakishness with which American Apparel robs Helvetica of its innocence. Observe with what candor and personality it reports the names of the Beatles.

How can one disarming typeface be so multi-faceted? We thought it was perfection in simplicity, but it might be its 80 faces.

If you are a sucker (or a decadent postmodernist or maybe just a big font-fan) of exceptional proportions, nail a double-sided Helvetica notebook. But why stop there? Helvetica would be an awesome name for your firstborn. We're sure he (or she) wouldn't hate you at all when time came to do the resume rounds or apply for college.

by Angela Natividad    Aug-27-07    
Topic: Promotions, Publishing, Strange



Oh Look: Another Well-to-Do, Trash-Talking Fashion Nazi

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MySpace is pushing a promotion for Bravo's series premier of Tim Gunn's Guide to Style, which looks like Tim Gunn's sad attempt to become the fashion world's version of the UK's Brian Sewell, who travels the world to say nasty things about everyone else's ancient oeuvres.

We are not convinced by his "fashion therapy" approach, but maybe it's only because he hasn't got an accent.

If a niche authority were a piece of American real estate, his or her value could increase by at least $2-$4,000 with proper use of an accent alone. Call it the personality variant of flying buttresses or vaulted ceilings.

by Angela Natividad    Aug-27-07    
Topic: Bad, Online, Promotions



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