Times Tough? Reward Your Stalwart Family -- with Upholstery!

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"It's funny how new furniture has a way of restoring people. Add something special to your home and experience it firsthand."

Awww. Tent cities have hardly folded up and we're already being hawked side tables. The piece at left comes from "Is it Home Yet?", a campaign/sweepstakes meant to bring gunshy spenders back into furniture showrooms.

The World Market Center Last Vegas, a showroom and exhibition space for the furniture industry, is pushing the effort, with help from collaborators like the National Home Furnishings Association and the Western Home Furnishing Association. In addition to a nationwide multimedia push, it will receive still more attention from widespread celebration of "National Home Furnishings Month" -- September, a traditional (but cozy!) period of change.

Note the ornaments of an industry calibrated for battle: a couch that, according to its materials tag, meets or exceeds "comfort and happiness standards"; and a slogan that appears on a rustic welcome mat. You can also expect to be heavily exposed to soft-touch shots of smiling unbroken families, cushy stuffed couches and other timeless accoutrements of the resilient nuclear unit.

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by Angela Natividad    Aug-24-09    
Topic: Bad, Campaigns, Online, Outdoor, Promotions, Trends and Culture



'Perfect Day' Yields Less-than-Perfect Piece

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Peugeot puts the pedal to the melodrama in "Perfect Day," a frosty but soft piece for its Crossover 3008 with Grip Control Technology. (We're not really sure what that is but if it aids in the creation of perfect vinyls in the sand, then hey, why not.)

The ad wraps up with the words "NEW TECHNOLOGY. NEW RESPONSABILITY." Props for the minimalist take, but that idea probably could've been delivered with a pinch more grace and the CAPS LOCK light off. Also, not sure where this will air, but "responsibility" is spelled like so when written in English (as opposed to "responsabilite" in French). Easy mistake to make, but somebody should've been watching out; to English-speaking audiences, it looks clumsy.

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by Angela Natividad    Aug-19-09    
Topic: Bad, Campaigns, Commercials



Dear Absolut, You're Not As Exceptional As You Think You Are

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Hmm. This new Absolut commercial from TBWA\Chiat|Day called Anthem makes one yearn for the glorious days of the long-running and simply beautiful print campiagn that was the cornerstone of the brand for so long. Now we have all manner of over-production to convince us "doing things differently leads to something exceptional...in an Absolut world."

Well, first of all, doing things differently is no guarantee of an exceptional results. And wasn't this Apple's deal? Remember Think Different? And how about in the real world. Don't we want exceptional things to happen in the real world and not cocooned about in some marketer-created dream world?

Ok so we are way over analyzing things here. But we still yearn for the "absolute simplicity" of Absolut's yesteryear.

by Steve Hall    Aug- 5-09    
Topic: Bad, Commercials



Yawn. Ozzy. Chimps. Yawn. Samsung. Yawn.

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Not because the animal lovers don't like them being used in commercials but, rather, because they are overused and the concepts are increasingly lame, we feel all primates should be banned from advertising. Yes, CareerBuilder, you heard us right. The chimpanzee thing is over. Dead. Done.

And that's made crystal clear in this new Sansung Solstice commercial featuring Ozzy Osbourne and, yes, a band of chimpanzees. Or is it monkeys? We can never tell the difference.

So Ozzy's getting atour of the Samsung facility and is shown the new phone. He drops a lame line about how cool Samsung is. He drops the F bomb (real surprise there) and he gets a text asking if he'd like to be in a new band...formed by the aforementioned chimps.

Lame. Lame. Lame.

And doesn't Samsung know the Solstice is a car? Oh wait. Not for much longer.

by Steve Hall    Aug- 5-09    
Topic: Bad, Celebrity, Commercials



Even Adrants Thinks This Campaign is Gratuitous

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Huh? Did we just write that headline? Are we now going to launch into how the use of sexual imagery is gratuitous, after having defended it (sort of) for years? Yes we are. Why? Not becasue sexual imagery is a bad thing. No. Not at all. But because this particular campaign leaves one with a giant, "You're selling what to who?" disconnect.

Copyranter found a New Zealand-based campaign for Widex hearing aids which employs "a naked hussy and a tattooed, tasseled tranny (I think)." Yea. Seriously.

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by Steve Hall    Jul-27-09    
Topic: Bad, Campaigns, Racy



When the Payoff Doesn't Live Up to the Build Up

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So we're watching this commercial and thinking, 'Hey, this is pretty cool. It's got to be for some really great, kick, ass new product." After all, who'd go to the trouble of filming and producing a Chinese Olympic closing ceremony-style extravaganza if all they were selling were rooftop solar panels.

Uh. Oops.

by Steve Hall    Jul-27-09    
Topic: Bad, Commercials, Good



Are People Really That Helpless With A Video Camera?

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You've seen them. The fake videos that attempt to pass themselves off as real all while minimizing the fact their just ads for brands. Some are stupid. Some are funny. Most are lame.

But they all have one thing in common. People who are seemingly incapable of holding a camera steady while filming the idiocy. Seriously. It's not that hard and you don't have to be a Hollywood DP to film something without the camera becoming possessed by an epileptic seizure.

Annoying and idiotic as the commonality is, it's never going to change. Why? Because if the camera remained on the video's primary subject, we'd get to see behind the curtain and the video would become even more obviously fake than it already is.

So here we have yet another shaky cam "viral video" selling some random energy drink.

by Steve Hall    Jul-22-09    
Topic: Bad, Strange, Video, Viral



There Will Never be An iPhone Killer So Stop Trying, Marketers

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Oh please, LG (and every other non-Apple phone maker). No matter how hard you try, how cute you attempt to be, how heavily you promote the Verizon app store (or whatever it's called) or how cool you try to make your uncool phones, you will never be the iPhone.

Now don't get all pissy with us claiming we're an iPhone snob. We don't even own one (yet) and we know it's not perfect. But, please. Please just admit you will never have the iPhone's cool factor and for God's sake stop trying to convince us with silly ads that you are anything but a boring touchscreen iPhone knock off.

Especially with silly Sesame Street-style silliness.

by Steve Hall    Jul-13-09    
Topic: Bad, Commercials, Creative Commentary



Acronyms and 'Bust-Accentuating Top' Make For Bad Truth Ad

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Arnold is out with another mock interview ad for the Truth campaign. In this entry, a seemingly immovable woman is subjected to the interviewers over-excited explanation of yet another business acronym. This one's AMPED or Articulate Motivated Passionate Energetic, which, clearly this woman is not.

The interviewer is amusingly animated. The woman is a dead fish. Perhaps due to years of suffering under the weight of her...oh that would be so rudely sexist to say! How dare we? Oh but wait. AdFreak got all sexist by suggesting just because the woman is wearing a "bust-accentuating" top, the ad is a bit NSFW. Huh?

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by Steve Hall    Jul- 8-09    
Topic: Bad, Cause, Commercials, Creative Commentary, Opinion



Advertising Has Removed Music's Soul

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There was once a day - or at least it feels like there was - when music had deep meaning. It was very personal and, depending upon the artist or the song, could immediately transform your emotional state, cause you to ponder your worth in the world or simply celebrate the beauty of life and the moments you cherish with the one you love.

There once was a day artists - musical or otherwise - wouldn't dream of allowing their work to be used in any form of commerce other than that of selling their own work. But over the past ten years or so, music and all things pop culture seem to have become one with commerce. Almost by definition, performers (not necessarily musicians in every case) like Britney Spears, Miley Cyrus, The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Beyonce, M83, Dr. Dre, Kid Rock, Ozzy Osbourne, Iggy Pop, Christina Aguilera, 50 Cent, Kylie Minogue, Madonna and, yes, the Beatles must have an element of commerce in their portfolio.

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by Steve Hall    Jul- 3-09    
Topic: Bad, Opinion







Stanton Optical


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