Doritos Narrows 'Crash the Super Bowl' Finalists Down to 5.

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Having long ago concluded it never has to finance another agency-produced ad EVER AGAIN, Doritos announced the five finalists of this year's "Crash the Super Bowl" contest. They are:

1. "Free Doritos," Joe Herbert, Batesville, IN
2. "New Flavor Pitch," Oren Brimer, New York, NY
3. "Power of the Crunch," Eric Heimbold, Venice, CA
4. "The Chase," Chris Roberts, Burbank, CA
5. "Too Delicious," Michael Goubeaux, Los Angeles, CA

Impressively, they all share Doritos' abrupt frat-boyish brand persona. Almost like they were made by guys cut out of the same mold but of varying degrees of funniness.

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O2 Produces Homage to Human Curiosity

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For client O2, VCCP/Berlin directed "Curiosity," a patchwork of scenarios where curiosity gets the better of you: is the bench with the "wet paint" sign still wet? Can bubble-gum help you hold your breath under water? Will your tongue really get stuck on the frozen pole?

The ad concludes by sending viewers to the O2 website, where they're invited to indulge their curiosity and try O2's service.

T-Mobile also appealed to the inquisitive mind in an American ad campaign for its G1 handset. But instead of pursuing their own answers, actors faced the camera with childlike postures and posed small but nagging questions.

The approach was more quirky than seductive -- signs of a cultural difference, or is one method actually better than the other?

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by Angela Natividad    Jan-13-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Television



For Every Woman with a Walk-In Closet, a Man Out There Needs a Big-Ass Fridge

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You might have seen a walk-in fridge on TV or in movies. Typically they're used for storing dead bodies or hiding from a giant blob monster until you suffocate and/or freeze to death.

Rarely is a walk-in fridge an appealing thing.

But in "Walk-In Fridge," Heineken positions the frozen death box as the XY version of every Sex and the City fangirl's dream: the walk-in closet. It's good -- the kind of work we expect to see during the Super Bowl. And the walk-in fridge does indeed kick copious ass.

After the screamers have their joygasm, the ad wraps up with a simple enough tagline: "Heineken. Serving the planet." Suits just fine.

Work by TBWA\Amsterdam. The ad appeared on Dutch TV at the beginning of the month, but the PR firm says it drew over a million hits online in less than five days -- which is probably why they're bringing it hither.

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by Angela Natividad    Jan-13-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Good, Online, Television



Sofia Coppola Lends Camera Eye to Miss Dior Cherie

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As demonstrated in Marie Antoinette, Sofia Coppola is really good at making pretty productions, unfettered by complicated narratives. It's this quality that makes her such a fetching fashion advertiser.

We give you the Coppola director's cut of Miss Dior Cherie, an ad for Christian Dior's bopper-honing fragrance.

Fortified by Brigitte Bardot's beachy Moi Je Joue -- and by model Maryna Linchuk's Lolita-like coquettishness -- it's sublime, frothy and fun: the perfect cocktail for girls that haven't yet graduated to Chanel No. 5.

See prints here.

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by Angela Natividad    Jan-12-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Celebrity, Commercials, Good, Television



Angry Whopper Unhinges Schoolmarms, Whips Germans into Shape

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Ever on the lookout for sensory violations, Brentter's brought us Angry Whopper ads for the UK and Germany.

In case you need refreshing, Burger King recently announced the availability of its Angry Whopper in the US with this bizarre ad, where a farmer physically abuses an onion during its crucial growing stage.

As a result, the onion leaves the earth hotter than Satan's feet. Added to a jalapeno-infused Whopper, it spanks the mouth of any office cog who dares order it.

It turns out the Angry Whopper's been on the market in Europe since May, with ads obviously tailored to each culture. The UK spot is pretty tame -- an anger management teacher, who thinks she can "handle" her rage, doesn't handle it very well after taking a bite.

As for the German one? Well, it's Germany. Add a fetish, slip it in leather and give it a whip.

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Finally, a Place in the UK Where Racy Ads May Live.

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The United Kingdom's got this really anal government body called the Advertising Standards Authority. Based on citizen complaints and its own yardstick for appropriateness, it's banned everything from nightmare-inducing Marmite ads to blasphemous haircare messages to mundane (but deceptive!) mascara spots.

But agency envelope pushers, take heart: the UK's FIVER network is working with Celador Productions to launch The Sexy Ad Show, a six-part send-up of some of the "raciest, most politically incorrect and barely-broadcastable adverts to [emerge] from ad-land."

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by Angela Natividad    Jan-12-09    
Topic: Promotions, Television, Trends and Culture



Welch's Defends the Honor of its Juice

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"Purple is the new black," proclaims a PR guy in an emailed preamble about his love of grape juice, which has been "much maligned as a sugary kids' drink that can't be natural (what could possibly be that purple, right?)."

In that manic light, Welch's, whose purple is 100% au naturelle, enlisted "food scientist" Alton Brown of the Food Network's Good Eats program.

Behold as he vindicates Welch's time-tested, suspiciously picturesque juice production practices. ("At Welch's, squeezing CON-cord grapes into natch'rel juice releases TONS of anti-awx-idants called ... po-lee-fee-nols.") He even takes time out of his day to teach us the Latin name for the Concord grape. (Veetis Labrewsca, baby.)

Boy does that ad work up a thirst. As well as a curious craving for Eucharist bread. "Uh-maaaay-zing little fruit." Thanks for your endorsement, Alton Brown!

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by Angela Natividad    Jan- 8-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Celebrity, Commercials, Television



Imagine if 'Jackass' Had an Educational Bent.

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To promote a marathon of The Discovery Channel's top shows, CA Square put together "Best of Discovery," a montage of clips where men get slapped, crocs are wraastled bare-handed, bugs get eaten live, and things are inevitably blown up.

Also, I'm pretty sure somebody got struck by lightning.

In his sauciest, most vigorous key, the narrator promises "more thrills, more explosions, more dirt ... more INSANITY." Curious? The marathon kicked off this week. No worries if you missed anything; it lasts for 13 days.

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by Angela Natividad    Jan- 8-09    
Topic: Commercials, Promotions, Television



Scion 'Samples' Puts Individuality Back in Play

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In '07, Scion seduced us with dark wit and gothic charm. Then, in '08, the company took an unexpected sharp turn down Lackluster Lane, barraging us with "limited edition" cars and other cheesy gimmicks.

(By way of explanation, a company rep said Scion's Little Deviants effort -- where "sheeple" are violently attacked by imps in custom cars -- upset a few crucial people.)

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by Angela Natividad    Jan- 8-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Online, Television



Not to Be Rude, But This Cupcake Tastes Suspiciously Like a Wi-Fi Hotspot

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After setting up its first-ever 4G wireless broadband network in Portland, Clearwire tapped Secret Weapon Marketing to promote its merits: better internet speeds, broader coverage.

The result was a series of irreverent prints -- and "Sprinkles," a TV ad that compares wireless coverage to cupcake sprinkles. (Rivals are represented by a stingy sprinkling; meanwhile, Clearwire's coverage deluges the bakery with diabetes-inducing hail.)

"Welcome to the future," the narrator says smugly.

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