Whales Get Honor Treatment from Contrite Japanese

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Leo Burnett made this pretty little GreenPeace video for Japan, which is currently undergoing some drama having to do with whaling and such.

Because whale meat was the main source of protein for the island after WWII, Japan feels it has the right to go on whaling, even if there's no demand for the meat (according to the Greenpeace pressie, considering we don't ourselves know how much or how little the island folk need whale meat today).

So Greenpeace goes, okay, let's restructure this historical conversation and turn the notion of man-to-whale relationships into one of reciprocal respect, instead of a Giving Tree situation (we hated that book, by the way) - where one side keeps giving until there's just nothing left.

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Between Films, Scorsese Works for AmEx

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Voila: an American Express ad for The Members Project, resulting from a collabo between Lost Planet and Martin Scorsese, via Ogilvy. It is surprisingly likable.

Poking fun at self-satisfied cause-whoring like Gap (red) and Kenneth Cole's Are You Putting Us On?, the spot includes Ellen, Andre Agassi and Sheryl Crow, sitting against a generic backdrop and admonishing the sympathetic to go forth and make a difference.

For those whose ears automatically perked up at Scorsese's name, there's no gunning-down for the cause. But amid the usual vagaries about doing your part, a casually-dressed guy (Tim from the office next door!) suddenly walks across the shot and points out the importance of keeping Lake Winnipesakee clean.

This sparks confusion between the stars and a general, if hesitant, admission that Lake Winnipesakee is probably worth keeping clean.

The spot ends with an empty stool and the usual closing jibjab about submitting your idea to website X. The winning entry gets not $10,000 (the going idea rate) but a whopping $5 million, which may mean this contest is actually worth someone's while.

by Angela Natividad    Jun- 4-07    
Topic: Brands, Celebrity, Commercials, Promotions, Television



Nike Builds Spanish 'Momentum' with Carnal Drumbeat

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We're taken by the infectious pulse of this Spanish Nike ad by Villarosas and production team Agosto. Dubbed Momentum, it showcases an underground battle between famous sports stars, flanked by gypsy drummers.

The audience, which ranges in flavor from urban grit to the polished elite, share a proud-faced intensity that pretty much embodies the emotional Nike ethos.

The press release calls "Momentum" a recognition to "the optimum moment that Spanish sport enjoys." Nice way to put it.

Translation of the closing challenge: "Are you brave enough to be the next?"

by Angela Natividad    May-31-07    
Topic: Brands, Commercials, Good, Television



3 Things We Learned About Skittles, Based on Latest Ads

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Can we put these somewhere on the packaging?

1. Skittles may encourage kinky roleplaying behaviour. "Be a bike, baby, be my bike. And I will bring you to heaven."

2. Skittles may actually be steroids. They both start with S and they're also both plural. Hey, it's an easy mistake to make.

3. Skittles may lead to violent tearing-asunder of world-as-we-know-it.

These new ads for Skittles created by TBWA, Toronto made us not want to have seconds. Outcomes take a turn we don't want to make after the titillating first handful.

We much prefer the Little Lad with the little dance and the I-hate-life! expression. He was so tame in comparison. What happened to that guy?

by Angela Natividad    May-30-07    
Topic: Brands, Commercials, Strange, Television



Failure of Life Support Needs No Interpretation

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It's always nice when an ad makes such good use of symbols, sounds and gestures that it doesn't need some unfortunate content guy to translate the text across 15 languages.

This spot for groen.be just implores "Save Our Planet!" - which is apt, because that's what it's called. It could have been about 45 seconds shorter, though.

by Angela Natividad    May-29-07    
Topic: Cause, Commercials, Television



Kevin Canned, Facebook Updated, Miller Lovemarked, Feedburner Googled

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- It is said NBC will, today, confirm the firing of Network Entertainment President Kevin Reilly. He will be replaced by William Morris Exec Ben Silverman.

- Facebook is getting in bed with marketers with a new release that lets software developers create branded applications which will integrate with the site.

- Miller Brewing is heading over to Saatchi & Saatchi for some Lovemarks goodness.

- All your feeds are belong to us.

- Julie Roehm goes after Wal-mart...again.

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by Steve Hall    May-29-07    
Topic: Agencies, Online, RSS, Strange, Television



Wendy's. Tree-Kicking. Revolution. What?

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We should start by saying that by the time we got to watching this ad for Wendy's by Saatchi & Saatchi, we were already a bit out-of-sorts because the eagle in this Unicast ad kept squawking. Eagles are just generally really distracting. They are exactly the opposite of ninjas.

Anyway, this Wendy's piece involves communal tree-kicking and a burger-inspired epiphany by a guy wearing the Wendy's girl wig. We're not really sure why. And if it does nothing else, the spot decently demonstrates that people who do stupid crap as a team will probably band together behind something equally inane.

To be fair, though, we'd rather watch this ad than another I'm-Lovin'-It rehash.

by Angela Natividad    May-25-07    
Topic: Commercials, Strange, Television



Bud.tv Dies, Online Ads Live, Carat Loses, Office Cools

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- Cynopsis reports, "The disappointing Bud.tv may "fade away" later this year, admitted Anheuser-Busch CEO August Busch IV in a conference call to analysts" and "Rupert Murdoch's bid to acquire the Dow Jones & Co., which includes The Wall Street Journal, Barrons and the Dow Jones Newswires, isn't looking too promising."

- The Internet Advertising Bureau and PriceWaterhouseCooper report online ad revenue increased 35 percent in 2006 to $16.9 billion.

- Havas' MPG is certainly grinning over its recent $740 million Sear media account win. Unfortunately former media agency, Carat, is grinning an entirely different grin.

- This is just not all that much fun but hey, you have to sell office cooling systems somehow.

by Steve Hall    May-24-07    
Topic: Agencies, Brands, Games, Online, Research, Television



YouTube Viewer Counts Scammed, DTC Does TV, Godzilla Gets Indigestion

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- Saatchi & Saatchi X opens in China. Forgets to include Chinese.

- Just like click fraud, that high YouTube video viewership count might not be all it's cracked up to be.

- Direct to Consumer drug advertising insanity is about to hit Europe...in the form of an entire TV channel devoted to telling people about drugs they don't need for ailments they don't have.

- While we saw this kite surfing-gone-aircraft video a few days ago unfettered by a brand, it's now attached to Sprite Zero.

- Godzilla and friends get indigestion. Pepto Max to the rescue.

by Steve Hall    May-23-07    
Topic: Agencies, Cable, Television, Video



Blueballs, on a Truck, Get Castrated, with Shears. KMLE Country Radio!

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We're having trouble not wincing to the image of a woman slicing off a set of blueballs with garden shears, even if they are attached to a truck, and we're not sure what that has to do with KMLE doubling your paycheque, but oh, the sacrifice seems significant.

Thank Knoodleshop for future instances of truck castration, coming to a pick-up near you.

by Angela Natividad    May-22-07    
Topic: Commercials, Strange, Television








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