Best Buy has done a fantastic job making it easier for people to choose the right gift this holiday season. Called the Wow Factor Finder, this website offers gift ideas based on a short survey about the person the purchased gift will be for. There is also a large collection of videos that have been placed on YouTube that detail particular products and for whom they might make a good gift. It's well thought out. It's not fancy. It's just straight forward advice many people need at this time of year.
After we realized we weren't Taye Diggs in an episode of Day Break, we realized Agency.com just can't seem to catch a break these days. Just a week or so after Lynx releases Lynxblow, a site that lets people blow the clothes off a model by blowing into their microphone, Agency.com client BT releases The Hi Def Chamber, a site that lets people blow stuff up by blowing into their microphone. Homage paid or coincidence? You decide.
Duvall Guillaume launched a bizarre campaign for animal rights group GAIA in Belgium. It's called Pigs in Pain. From the PR guy's letter:
"In Belgium, five million piglets are castrated without anaesthetic every year. The cries of agony of these piglets are unbearable. Yet our government still pretends not to hear it. In spite of promises they made 3 years ago to ban the cruelty."
With that in mind they created a pop group called Pigs in Pain. Their single, which was actually released on the radio, consisted of pigs screaming in inexplicable agony. It made our ears bleed. Clever way to get animal angst out to the public. So read the requisite blog, watch the music video and share in the plight of Belgian pigs. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
In an intersection between the surreal story-telling band The Decemberists and Napoleon Dynamite, Microsoft uses Clearification to promote Vista. This is a subtly witty bio-site about a guy suffering from HANDTOSS, or Hyper-Achiever with No Direction and Tendency to Overcomplicate Situations Syndrome.
The campaign was created by McCann and Mekanism. The HANDTOSS victim is comedian Demetri Martin. We never thought we'd say this about any one of Microsoft's myriad attempts to de-stodge, but we dig it. Then again we'd love anybody who covertly reveals his favourite subject in school "involved karate and ... crying."
We could listen to this guy spout neuroses in his mellow little voice for hours. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
Apparently that Subservient Santa thing is part of a larger campaign by Toy, NY for OfficeMax. The idea is to get people supply-shopping for the holidays by disseminating 20 time-burning holiday sites as "gifts" into the 'net, which is already as bloated as the gift-giving Saint himself. The concept does have that idle but colourful FAO Schwarz feel to it so maybe it's ingenious and we just don't know it.
Upload your head and elf yourself. Armwrestle with a reindeer (that sounds horrifically painful, actually). Get a kid with his tongue stuck to a pole to talk. Sing conspiracy carols. You get the idea. - Contributed by Angela Natividad
Viagra works. It really does. Even for gymnasts who need to stay rock hard during their routines. Huh? WTF? Just click here if you want to see the full version of this NSFW ad Jason Kottke received as a spam email. Damn, that looks painful!
For its clients at WaySpa, Dentsu Canada creates this viral-intended spot that reminds the witless, whipsawed men out there how very screwed they are if they forget to get honey a gift on the day of judgment. Once all the stress is over you too might want to book a spa visit.
And in the style of easy humour it's always funny when a dude with an accent and a bad sweater says something like, "You forgot to get that bitch a gift!" - Contributed by Angela Natividad
Where do soccer balls go when lost? All over the place, apparently. For client Submarino, agency Santa Clara produced this little ball ad out of Casablanca. We liked the whimsical song in the background because it made us think of Kermit the Frog.
Someone we know called this "yet another masturbatory effort from creatives that want to make movies instead of ads." After that we couldn't help but wonder - does that make a good ad then? - Contributed by Angela Natividad
Alex, the college student who made good with the Million Dollar Homepage idea that none of us could believe we didn't think of first, is back post-million with a philanthropic offering. No, that's not the right description.
Pixelotto, in a shade slightly more garish than the Million Dollage Homepage, promises to make a millionaire out of a hopeful ad clicker. All this fervent ad clicking presents an incentive for advertisers to keep investing in this pay-per-pixel insanity we thought would die and stay dead after Alex had enough money to get those socks he wanted so badly. Will the pixel Boy Wonder do it again? - Contributed by Angela Natividad
Here's some interesting eye candy in which AIDS is given a voice, and it ain't friendly. Most will remember the unpleasant Roy Cohn from the hard-as-nails Pacino depiction in 2003's Angels in America.
Unendorsed by Join Red, a movement to reinvigorate the AIDS discourse, the ad was created by Owen Plotkin, who likes making provocative ads for good causes.
Interestingly enough, tempering Join Red is growing speculation about what AIDS actually is and whether it exists at all. We look forward to watching the crossfire move into public salience. - Contributed by Angela Natividad