We've all seen sterile ads for feminine products in which piss or menstrual fluid comes out blue. We all know that piss and menstrual fluid are not actually blue. Those crazy cats at Amalgamated, the very guys who brought us Ben & Jerry claymation, decide to stomp on the polite institution of blue bodily fluid for their client Clearblue Easy and its new digital pregnancy test.
We would have respected them for that. But they took things one step further and put the pregnancy test in space, a la Dark Star, and then let fall a stream of disembodied space piss! And then our brains exploded.
Check it out here. But be careful. It's a little crazy.
We think we've found one of the more amusing agency holiday cards with Sullivan Higdon & Sink's We Love Holiday Sweaters. But come on guys. Leave the political correctness at home. It is a Christmas sweater after all and not a "holiday" sweater. You don't want to encourage the horror of people wearing these fashion faux pauxs every holiday do you? Once a year is enough! Anyway. On the site, not only do you get to wallow in the absurdity of the Christmas sweater, you get to create your own! Yes, advertising people. Leave that boring client work behind for a moment and test your true, unapproval process-hindered creativity in the knitting section of the site. Let's see who can create the best (or is it worst?) sweater. Email your creation to email@example.com and we'll feature them here. Or, just leave the link in comments.
absurdity of the Christmas sweater
Pop quiz. What do you get when you combine an advertising agency Christmas card with the Second Life fad? An agency Christmas card video set in Second Life, of course. Leo Burnett Detroit, one of the early agency entries into the virtual world has forgone the typical, boring, so yesterday, "real world" holiday card and, instead, given us an avatar-filled, winter-themed, Second Life hip hop jam. Hmm. Different. Nicely produced (by Millions of Us). Though it doesn't look like the Second Life we know. No lag. No half-built sims. No clunky interface. Just a lot of happy, dancing agency avatars. What's not to like?
We just have to wonder what sort of guy could be so hard up for sex, he'd have to resort to manipulation by billboard to achieve pleasurable release. Oh wait. He's part of the ad and we're talking about digital manipulation here. Funny. Ha ha. Oh wait. Digital manipulation? That's still funny.
Remember the creative department douchebag? This is him, cooler.
Iron Creative throws together the ultimate douchey holiday card personality, a sequel to last year's snowman story. Yeah, it's another holiday card. Yeah, we're as sick of them as you are. And yeah, we're going to keep throwing them up here since creatives seem to love making them.
In Iron Creative's defense, it is amusing to think of a snowman as the next big VC. Or covered in the limbs of writhing hot cartoon women. He's ice cold, baby. Ice cold.
This HSBC ad out of Singapore demonstrates what may be a successful attempt to re-brand a stodgy, almost rotary old player into something more contemporary. An interesting choice, though it begs the question which, between "traditional" and "trendy," is actually the positive and the negative. Smart not to paint either option in a bad light. A hat tip to the old boys - at least they know a message is only as good as its interpretation.
Ross Simons Jewelers has launched another version of its long-running marriage proposal faux paux (did we spell that right?) promotion. Back in the day, videos of marriage proposals gone wrong (or right) were physically shipped to the brand and only a few people (the judges) got to see hundreds of versions of that awkward moment in life known as the marriage proposal. Now we have YouTube for public humiliation the world over. In a promotion called Proposal Gone Wrong, Ross Simons is offering $10,000 to the person who submits the best marriage proposal screw up.
Oddly enough, the promotion is entirely self-serving (not that all marketing isn't) in that the $10,000 doesn't come in the form of cash but in store credit. It might have been nice if that $10,000 was around before the engagement ring was actually purchased. Now, the $10,000 has to be spent on other body bling whether you want it or not. Oh wait, people love jewelery. Who are we kidding?
In Lives Connected, 44 Peter A Mayer employees revisit their Katrina experiences. Far from the usual give-us-money pitch, the courage-tales nod to a tradition of legacy storytelling prevalent in New Orleans, with recurring themes weaving through each piece. The site launched around the same time hurricane season bowed out.
The NOLA-based agency calls this an "interactive data visualization" - a busy buzzword for "oral history" that we probably could have done without. But Mayer's shtick happens to be civic pride. Its slogan is, blatantly, "We wouldn't want to be anywhere else."
"[The purpose of Lives Connected] is to highlight the resilient nature of the agency and the spirit and dedication of its employees," explains a representative.
We're pretty sure somebody's going to shit all over this and claim it's an exploitation of high emotions and turbulent events. That's cool. But we liked the gesture and there's room in the Katrina narrative for more than just body counts and weepy stories. Those don't really help anybody or bring business back to the community. So nice job, guys.
With the help of Lowe New York, XM Radio puts together a holiday card generator that's snazzier than your average. Shucking the white snow and holiday colours that one both expects and dismisses in holiday card campaigns, cards remain a sparing white-on-black with yellow flourishes. The nav is also stark and sparing.
We thought it was a neat concept - a few equal-opportunity greetings, a streamlined appearance, clever music, twitchy animals. We doff our caps to XM and Lowe for turning a stock campaign into something engaging without embarrassing themselves or indulging in overkill. That's surprisingly hard to do.
It's a good thing Annika holds the Kenwood MP3 player up to the camera for a close up in this video otherwise we'd have suffered from the "my eyes are up here" syndrome throughout the entire thing in which she sings We Wish You A Merry Christmas in an enticingly sexy Swedish accent. Acknowledging her hard to miss cleavage, this rendition of "We" Wish You A Merry Christmas takes on entirely new meaning.
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