Once Again, Sense of Humor Takes a Blow

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We're getting sick of writing headlines like this one. With increasing frequency, the ability of the human race to appreciate humor is dwindling and will soon be very much like the planet Vulcan crossed with some kind of politically correct self-esteem club; emotionless. overly logical and devoid of the ability to rib or poke fun at one another.

The Postal Service has reached a settlement with Burger King over an ad that depicted a mail carrier becoming distracted by Burger King breakfast food. The Post Office didn't take kindly to the ad and, in particular, copy with read, "With pancakes and eggs on my plate, the mail has to wait."

The Postal Service claimed Burger King used the brand's logo and uniform without permission and portrayed the mail carries in a less than positive light. while Burger King admits no wrong doing, it has agreed to revise the ad so that the uniform is generic and does not use the Postal Service logo.

It's amazing comedians are still employed.

by Steve Hall    May-23-11    
Topic: Brands, Commercials, Opinion, Policy



Audi Owners Are Crazy!

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We all know some people can get pretty crazy over the cars they love. But all this Audi commercial does is illustrate how idiotic its customers are. In the ad, people risk life and limb to jump out of their BMW's, Luxus' and Mercedes' - while on the highway - and hop into the seat of a brand new Audi atop a car carrier.

Yes, the ad is meant to illustrate the "extraordinary" things people will do to get their hands on an Audi but really? It's much easier - and far less dangerous and stupid - to walk around an Audi car dealer lot to check out a new vehicle. But, of course, that would be a really boring ad so idiotic stupidity will always reign supreme in advertising.

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by Steve Hall    May-18-11    
Topic: Brands, Commercials, Creative Commentary



Rachel Bilson Sells Condoms...Uh...Ice Cream

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Perhaps during the last week or so while fast forwarding through commercials, you may have caught a peek at the odd combination of Rachel Bilson and a box of condoms. You think to yourself, "condom ads on TV...no big deal. After all, TV is rife with penile stiffening products, why not condoms too?"

Had you paused and rewound to watch the commercial, you would have seen Bilson who, stuck in a traffic jam, decides to hop out of her car, run over the tops of other cars to chase an 18 wheeler filled with condoms.

Oh wait. Had you actually paid attention while watching the commercial you would have realized it wasn't a commercial for condoms at all. Rather it was Unilever's U.S. introduction of the very questionably (for this country) named Magnum ice cream.

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by Steve Hall    May-17-11    
Topic: Brands, Celebrity, Commercials, Creative Commentary, Opinion, Strange



Cannes Dubs Ikea Advertiser of the Year

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In acknowledgment of its creative achievements - in the form of the 50 Lions it has won over the past twenty years - Cannes will bestow the honor of Advertiser of the Year on Ikea. The award will be presented to Ikea Group Global Retail Manager Noel Wijsmans during the Festival in late June.

Ikea and its agencies are well known for their work which included the famed Crispin Porter + Bogusky-created Lamp ad that was awarded the Film Grand Prix in 2003. We thought the honor should have gone to Honda's Cog or Saturn's Sheet Metal that year but hey, that's just our opinion.

That said, there is no doubt the brand has done admirable work over the years and is absolutely deserving of this award.

by Steve Hall    May-17-11    
Topic: Brands, Industry Events



Amstel Light Campaign Shifts Focus to Taste

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Amstel Light has launched a new campaign today which refocuses the brand's messaging from that of the beer's Amsterdam heritage to that of the beer's actual benefits; that it doesn't taste like a light beer. The campaign, shot by Dutch photographer Maarten de Groot, will include national print and online as well as radio and OOH in Boston.

by Steve Hall    May-16-11    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns



Cause Group Overreacts to Man Wearing Dress in Sprint Ad

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In yet another sad confirmation the human race has lost its ability to appreciate humor, several cause groups have complained about a Sprint ad which ran several websites and newspapers Tuesday. The ad, which stated Sprint opposition to AT&T's proposed takeover of T-Mobile, features a man in a dress that looks like the one the T-Mobile Babe wears in the T-Mobile campaign.

A man in a dress! Now that's funny! Come on, people! But no. No one has a sense of humor anymore.

On complaint came from REC Networks Founder Michi Etre who is transgender and didn't like the ad. He issued a statement which read, in part, "We are deeply disturbed by an advertisement that was developed and approved in part by organizations including Media Access Project and the Center For Media Justice. While we do not view this as intentional transphobia on the part of MAP or the other organizations or Sprint, who purchased the advertising space, we feel that the depiction is still inappropriate."

Again. A man in a dress. What's next? Louisa May Alcott's Little Woman retitled because it offends midg...uh...little people?

by Steve Hall    May-12-11    
Topic: Brands, Cause, Opinion, Policy



Hardee's Auctions Miss Turkey's Bikini

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Remember that Hardee's commercial with Miss Turkey in a Turkey Burger Bikini? Now the brand has placed that bikini on eBay and will sell it to the highest bidder. It's kind of brilliant and fetishistically freakish all at the same time.

But we're sure there are enough panty sniffers out there to drive the price up to a respectably significant figure.

by Steve Hall    May- 9-11    
Topic: Brands



Dial Gets Men Dirty. Then Cleans Them Up

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OK so it's not at all as witty and goofy as Old Spice but perhaps that's the point. After all, Dial is a pretty staid brand so we can't get too wild here. Oh but wait! We can. And that's just what Red Tettmer + Partners did for Dial for Men.

The agency crafted and event called Camp Dirt, a three day event where men can go and do what men...um, boys...do best: get dirty doing things like sliding down a mud pile, drag racing bulldozers, digging with dynamite and playing paintball.

Oh yes. Get these men seriously dirty and then give them some Dial to clean them up. The event will be held August 26-28 in Granby, Colorado.

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by Steve Hall    May- 5-11    
Topic: Brands, Commercials, Promotions



Bank Sponsors Story of Southern Thailand Youth Soccer Champs

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Well here's an inspiring story. Yes, it's a sponsored story but, hey, someone's got to pay the bill. It's the story of a group of boys who lived on the island of Koh Panyee in Thailand and, in 1986, decided to start a football team. Sounds easy enough until you realize the island of Koh Panyee consists of a tiny mountain with the rest of the village built on floating docks. In other words, no place to play football.

Undeterred, the boys built their own football pitch (field) and learned how to play in bare feet on rickety planks held together with bent nails. Turns out they became quite good at the game and went on to win many Southern Thailand Youth Championships over the years.

Working with Leo Burnett & Arc Worldwide, TMB Bank sponsored the film, called Make THE Difference. And that's what it's all about. Set your mind to something, do what it takes to get there and you will achieve.

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by Steve Hall    May- 4-11    
Topic: Brands, Video



Israeli Votes to Change Wafer From 'Vafel' to 'Bafel'

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Saatchi & Saatchi tel Aviv launched a campaign to solve the age old problem of whether to call a wafer Vafel or Bafel. Vafel is the Hebrew word for wafer but the seemingly more common slang term is Bafel. In response to a survey which overwhelmingly favored Bafel, Elite Wafer changed all their packaging accordingly.

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by Steve Hall    May- 3-11    
Topic: Brands










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