On Christmas day, One Laptop Per Child brought back the voice (if not the body) of Yoko Ono's beloved John Lennon.
OLPC's mission is to bring cheap, sturdy laptops to the world's poorest children. So paint your sympathetic face on as a freshly conviction-laden (if nasal) Lennon compares giving a child a laptop to the vision he shared through his music. At the end, the Walrus himself appears, piped in from the great beyond through a kid computer with Shrek ears.
Negroponte ought to learn from his profitable peers. Resuscitating a dead guy -- particularly one whose yearning for peace has been used to sell everything from diapers to ice cream -- never works in your favor, no matter how noble the intentions. In fact, it's about as disturbing as watching a demented technophile play puppeteer with a decomposing marionette.
With help from production firm Dictionary Films, Leo Burnett launched a TV spot for "Food Shouldn't Be a Luxury," an effort to encourage locals to donate supplies to the Greater Chicago Food Depository.
The ad's put together like a generic perfume ad, with occasional flashes of a boiling pot and some random pasta fondling. We seriously winced when the model sexily purred "Spaghetti" in her fake Kate Moss-for-Eternity voice, but it got the point across: Okay, okay! Food shouldn't be a luxury.
Make a donation or volunteer time at Every1Can.org. Unlike the prints (see first link), the spot doesn't invite users to text donations over. Not sure if that means the texting thing didn't pan out, or if Leo Burnett just doesn't think people keep phones nearby while watching TV.
Under the slogan "Your holiday spirit," Lamb's pushes a triage of billboards that speak directly to scruffy dudes exhausted by the spendy and energetic gyrations of others.
Each board appears to be wood-paneled and (festively?) duct-taped. Perched by a swig-worthy neck of Lamb's are the following messages:
o "Yeah, we're into free-range turkey. It's called hunting."
o "You can buy a $75 tree. Or a $10 axe." (At left.)
o "Holiday shopping should be a one-day event."
Amusing work, even if it speaks to the parts of men that have attempted to fix our cars, build us coffee tables and otherwise sprinkle havoc (and sawdust, and transmission fluid) on our tidy store-bought worlds. Given the lines we're all having to brave just to visit the bank or buy groceries, the ads'll probably draw more lips to the bottle than those of the target market. (Frankly, we're halfway there.)
The work builds on Lamb's "It beats fancy" campaign, orchestrated by John St.
- Top 10 virals of '08, courtesy of the guys that brought you this.
- Digitas Health donates to charity for the holidays, as does RAZ PR (which told us via paper card). Meanwhile, comScore pledges trees.
- "Unprecedented economic waters" (nice euphemism!) means no FedEx retardation during '09's Super Bowl. One less thing to look forward to. Honestly, anything involving Burt Reynolds makes us happier people.
- Remember that crazy/beautiful, semi-schizophrenic media orgy titled Game, Game, Game and Again Game? The sequel is called I Made This. You Play This. We Are Enemies. Creator Jason Nelson promises "More strange hand drawn creatures, with screen shot anchored levels and all the poetic bits known." And then we kissed him.
- Crowdsourcing horror.
- Beancasting Steve and Bill. Among other things, they talk online video marketing, Pepsi suicide ads and diversity (lack of?) in the industry.
- Learn to shred with CP+B. "But yeah, the biggest thing people will go after is Alex giving lessons on how to play Extreme's More Than Words." Sounds like a winner to me.
Crispin's global conquest project for Burger King, where it scours the world in pursuit of "Whopper Virgins," is in full swing. Idle TV-trawling exposed us to taste test teasers in both Thai and Transylvanian villages.
This holiday season, Alltel reprises last year's concept -- vintage animation -- to push the superiority of its My Circle unlimited free calling plan. The ad features the carrier's Nick Nayloresque mascot Chad, yukking it up with Santa about how some people just don't get the meaning of Christmas.
And like last year, Alltel's effort falls in the shadow of Apple, which also pinned the old hero vs. villain dirge to an animated backdrop. Unlike the chill scruffy Mac, however, the guffawing greased-up Chad rings a lot less likable.
Production work by Bent Image Lab, agency Santo.
In yet another TD Bank ad featuring Regis and Kelly, Abraham Lincoln shares his (angsty, angsty!) feelings about being the face of the mostly-worthless penny.
Kelly -- who lacks the social delicacies to perceive this might be a dangerous topic -- seizes this opportunity to tell the audience that TD Bank loves pennies so much, "they'll count them and convert them to dollars for free."
@dirkthecow introduced us to What Davo Loves, a responsible-driving initiative for Queensland Transport, Australia.
The site's put together like a generic profile page for a dude called Davo. At right is a montage of people he loves, and at left is a video of him fondling his new car, lamely named "Rex."
All frothy fun, right? That is, until the car careens out of the video frame and slams into his collage of friends, fracturing their faces like so much cheap glass.
...while trashed! "Mmm, tasty pies." That naughty knitted-sock simian.
The work -- which precedes a full-length ad that debuts on Christmas day -- riffs off the speeches Queen Elizabeth occasionally gives via YouTube, but we swear the script flubs were inspired by these orgamsumumic outtakes for this Lavalife ad. ("Orgamsums? Orgasmums.") By AKQA and Cake.
When last we saw the PG Tips monkey, he invited us back to his place "for a cuppa."
Operating under the premise that "there are too many rote answers and not enough good questions," The Atlantic launched Think Again, for which rhetorical questions are posed in neon lights, foregrounding deserted industrial spaces.
Right now these ads are all over Internets. Videos, blog posts and photo variants are available on the site.
We like it -- it's a simple, but still eye-catching and occasionally even witty. Some we've seen:
o Should women settle?
o Why do presidents lie?
o Is the doughnut doomed?
Lately ad land is all about the rhetorical questions. (Maybe it's the economy.) See Google's T-Mobile G1 spot or those weire Ask.com pieces.
Speaking of Ask, it recently ran a banner ad campaign that posed questions, then invited people to click for the answer. The act brought them to Ask.com, where the answer appeared with a prominent heading and image.
That's one tactic that would've made The Atlantic's campaign better: if you could click on the banners and find news articles directly related to the question, maybe addressing it from multiple sides. As it is, the ads only bring you to the Think Again subsite.