It's safe to say that the last time Ty swept us -- or kids, for that matter -- off our feet was during the peak of the Beanie Babies era. That time is over; the innocent BBs have been shelved away, alongside Mattel's ubiquitous Barbie, in favor of fat-lipped multi-ethnic Bratz.
And like Mattel, Ty is fighting back. Meet Ty Girlz. They not only sport gigantic lips and doe-eyes; they also have their own virtual world.
None of which really mattered until we saw this ad called TyGirlz Around the World, which tells us Ty also has an off-color sense of humor. We're creeped out ... and we love it.
Under the premise that contemporary families have become little more than communal strangers, Panasonic tries bringing back family time with its "family" of HD products and this ad.
Because nothing bonds like Shrek in HD.
The ad debuted last week on ABC and USA Today and is part of Panasonic's Living in High Definition campaign. (Get it? "High definition"?)
If you think your family could use some lessons a la Full House from Panasonic, you could win a spot in the program by entering here. Lucky households will make formal pledges to spend more time with one another and other super-exciting stuff.
Thank Kirshenbaum Bond + Partners for this winner.
We haven't heard a peep from Saturn since the Aura's mad diss by Bob Garfield. But the company hopes to reinvent itself with the Astra (try not to confuse the names), targeted directly at MySpacers.
To celebrate its call to "Rethink," users are invited to take a test drive. Try to work out what's going on with the laggy PowerPoint-esque site while trying to ignore the corny copy: "Go. Stop. Look. Turn. Repeat. Is this really how we fall in love with a car?"
It may not be the formula for falling in love with a car, but it sounds suspiciously like the directions on a shampoo bottle, except with too many confusing demands.
Ahh, three spankin'-new iPhone ads. The synopsis: iPhone Saves My Ass in Front of My Boss, iPhone -- and Maybe My Wallet -- All I Need in Life (why is this guy parked on the sidewalk?), and iPhone is God's Gift to Mankind.
And who better to convey these messages than the breathy customers whose lives were saved? (It's possible they're all early adopters justifying that nasty $200 price cut announced two months after the iPhone's debut. Way to go, Steve!)
Hrm. All right. These spots for the Honda Ridgeline are kind of clever. In fact, they remind us a little of that Honda Fit series we just looked at (with the comic-book headlines and abrupt punchlines), except a little less...
...what? Is it wit we're lacking? Well, they certainly make an effort. Watch tough meet classy, rugged meet spacious, tradition meet innovation, and rough meet smooth.
Due props go out to RPA and LA-based MJZ for the use of Chuck Norris, a lumberjack and lasers, though. It's rare when those elements don't coalesce into a hit of mind-boggling proportions.
You know you're stunningly geeky when you suffer edge-of-seat anticipation for the next installment of a Sony ad. (Will it be like Paint? Will it be like Ball?)
Shedwa finally ends our wait - and the final result isn't much like its predecessors at all. Created by Fallon with the work of 40 Passion-based animators, this is arguably the smoothest, most well-orchestrated use of stop-motion animation -- and, well, Play-Doh -- we've seen yet.
The ad also has an emotional pull that can probably be attributed to use of The Rolling Stones' "She's a Rainbow." Ad editors call this laziness - pop hits always bring easy emotion to a piece.
Which is the perfect segue into a still bigger buzzkill: Looks like the ad was a rip off a panoramic originally created by, but not credited to, husband/wife team Kozyndan.
Come on, Fallon/Passion. Credit your muses. How can we love it now?
It's like pulling teeth to find an ad that gives you practical information in a clever way without bashing you over the head in either direction.
But these retro-vibing :15 spots for the Honda Fit manage to be quick and informative with a witty -- but thankfully minimalist -- "WTF?" aspect. Eyes was like a speedy sci-fi take on the Nissan Rogue ad, which also debuted just recently. And Gas Mileage, while slightly less memorable, maintains the campaign's pace and says everything it needs to without tempting you to push fast-forward.
a52 produced the spots for agency RPA out of Santa Monica, CA.
We love Diesel. We've been shopping there since we were old enough to comfortably blow triple digits on sneakers.
So maybe it's our bias when we look at one of their myriad scatterbrained campaigns and suggest that maybe Diesel does know what it's doing. Maybe they're the rock stars of the fashion world: burn-outs on the outside, but soaked in talent and a profound quest for meaning from within.
...assuming you want to get very close at all.
To promote the Pitpass subsite (created by Zugara, LA), which is Toyota's attempt to drum a fanbase out of the NASCAR niche, Saatchi & Saatchi gives us FanDangler and FanTandem.
The former actually seems like a lot of fun, and the latter looks like something you might think would be funny to try if you were bored as hell and high as a kite and had nothing better to do besides see what NASCAR was up to (and baby, it ain't never much).
This is cute. In this trilogy of ads, Intel pairs assembly-line imagery with compelling background narrative that lends the sense these chips aren't just cogs in the wheel; they're personalities seeking unique opportunities out in the world.
Observe how chips look for love, ponder their possibilities on "graduation day" and whistle while hard at work.
The campaign, which was produced by Anonymous for agency McCann Erickson, makes a great companion series to HP's The Computer is Personal Again, which focused on how the personalities of computer owners imbued the computer itself.