The Ladders Delivers Twisted Logic

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In an odd sort of reverse back stab, this new The Ladders commercial, Chairs, from Fallon delivers a confusing message. Confusing because The Ladders' purpose is to serve those with jobs in the $100K plus range. Not the little guy. The big guy.

So how do they explain that in this new television commercial? By shooting and lassoing the big guy and kindly letting all the little ones go free. A mixed message at best.

And, yes, we know it's a metaphor. Still.

by Steve Hall    Jan- 9-09    
Topic: Bad, Commercials



Anne Hathaway and Kate Hudson Assault Website

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Page takeovers work well if done properly, like this recent one for Ford. If, on the other hand, all they do is obnoxiously plaster a website with an endless array of banners - even if they are gorgeous images of Anne Hathaway and Kate Hudson - the only thing they accomplish is to make one wonder if a million pop ups just opened in their browser.

by Steve Hall    Jan- 6-09    
Topic: Bad, Celebrity, Online



Charmin Half-Asses Casting Call Campaign

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In the last full week of December, Charmin launched what appears to be the beginning of a casting call campaign for a new bear mascot. (It isn't clear what went wrong with the old ones. Maybe too much tissue fondling.)

The guy who passed this to us called it "definitely a worthy laugh from the guys at Publicis," but he was clearly lying through his typing fingers. Besides a casting video for this sloppy specimen of the Ursidae family, uploaded two weeks ago, there's nothin' else going on.

Notably, at least one commenter expressed interest in the campaign -- but he joined YouTube six days ago. Also, one of the two videos he uploaded is pro-Charmin, so we're guessing he didn't find the effort via StumbleUpon.

Hey, Publicis ... you awake? For inspiration, look to Milk, which shat this gimmick months ago and at least tried running with it.

more »

by Angela Natividad    Jan- 6-09    
Topic: Bad, Brands, Campaigns, Online



John Lennon Repurposed As Third World Laptop Salesman

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On Christmas day, One Laptop Per Child brought back the voice (if not the body) of Yoko Ono's beloved John Lennon.

OLPC's mission is to bring cheap, sturdy laptops to the world's poorest children. So paint your sympathetic face on as a freshly conviction-laden (if nasal) Lennon compares giving a child a laptop to the vision he shared through his music. At the end, the Walrus himself appears, piped in from the great beyond through a kid computer with Shrek ears.

Negroponte ought to learn from his profitable peers. Resuscitating a dead guy -- particularly one whose yearning for peace has been used to sell everything from diapers to ice cream -- never works in your favor, no matter how noble the intentions. In fact, it's about as disturbing as watching a demented technophile play puppeteer with a decomposing marionette.

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The Cobalt: A Cred-Bereft Ugly that Can't Be Painted Over

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Snake Plissken, who sent us this lead, called the hip-hop-inspired Chevy Cobalt Labs subsite "an identity crisis in website form."

After surveying the features -- Tricked or Trashed (think Hot-or-Not), Mod Street (where you can visually vandalize your own Cobalt) and Track Challenge (where you can race other site visitors) -- we're inclined to agree.

We also wonder why Honda never tried anything similar with the rice-rocket Civic crowd. Unlike the Cobalt, which is stretching the limits of our imagination with this Pimp My Ride crap, that was a car kids liked to play with.

by Angela Natividad    Dec- 8-08    
Topic: Bad, Brands, Campaigns, Online



Beck's Launches Blog. Does Everything Wrong

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Beck's has launched a blog, Different by Choice. Yawn, right? But the way they've announced it and the way it's formatted is so annoying, it can't be left alone.

In an email beginning with "Hello Important Marketing Blog People," Beck's blogger Darius asks, "has anyone told you recently how hot you are?" and then goes on to explain how he "destroyed" 850 other potential bloggers vying for the job "'cos that is the way I roll." Ugh. Cue the Agency.com Subway video.

more »

by Steve Hall    Dec- 8-08    
Topic: Bad, Opinion, Weblogs



Every Can of Pepsi Max Drives an Anxious Calorie to Suicide

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These ads are causing a bit of a stink. Variants -- with titles generously supplied by me -- include The Bullet or the Noose? and Puddles of Inferno!.

Are they really that bad?

According to Meredith Corp., 56% of women worry more about weight than disease, so you know there's enough hate surrounding muffin-tops to happily fuel many millions of sordid calorie suicides.

And come on. Who didn't enjoy the Garbage Pail Kids? Or Sin City? Or, hell, the Road Runner cartoons?

That was pure sadism. And what did you do? Shovel in another mouthful of Froot-Loops, that's what.

by Angela Natividad    Dec- 3-08    
Topic: Bad, Brands, Campaigns, Magazine, Poster



Georgia Senator Saxby Chambliss Commercial An Awkward Mess

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Straight out of advertising's Book of Awkward Moments comes this Thanksgiving-themed commercial for Georgia Senator Saxby Chambliss who, after giving thanks and offering prayer for President Bush, President-Elect Obama and the troops, gives his granddaughter a very creepy chest grope.

Creepy as that move might be, it's made even creepier by the two grand kids who utter "...and vote for my big daddy." With the commercial just dripping with overtones of family value, the ending is a bit shocking. Even more shocking is the fact no one noticed Chambliss' awkward hand movement before the commercial hit the airwaves.

by Steve Hall    Dec- 1-08    
Topic: Bad, Commercials, Political, Strange



Once Again, Men Are the the Doghouse. Courtesy of Facebook Connect

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As only Alisa Leonard-Hansen can, Razorfish's Saatchi & Saatchi NY's (we are told Razorfish's role in this was small to non-existent) use of Facebook Connect for JC Penney's Beware of the Doghouse gets roundly trashed for what she dubs a really poor use of FBC. Of JC Penney's use of a stand alone microsite with Facebook Connect, Alisa writes, " Because that is super useful and makes much more sense than say, integrating FBC into the JC Penney online shopping experience and thereby including friend data (purchases, wishlists, etc) into the product merchandising model."

Couldn't have said "missed Opportunity" better ourselves. Though some points must be given for trying.

by Steve Hall    Nov-24-08    
Topic: Bad, Social



Motorola Krave Website Not Krave-Worthy

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Somewhat kludgy and epilepsy-inducing, DraftFCB, with help from Grow Interactive, is out with a new website for the Motorola Krave ZN4, a flip phone with a clear top that's supposed to marry the benefits of a flip phone with a touch screen phone.

The site profiles six people from various walks of life. How this relates to the phone is unclear but you'll learn about camping, bee wrangling, nocturnal mixing, sole searching, jewelry design, tennis mentoring...and the importance of a second pair of underwear. All very important stuff.

by Steve Hall    Nov-24-08    
Topic: Bad, Online










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