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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Buy Better Bulbs; WWF Will Do the Heavy Lifting

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The industrial pollutants in the World Wildlife Federation's "Light Bulb" ad are only tired toys. But these miniatures -- small things we can easily control -- still convey the helplessness environmentalists feel when faced with oversized, eco-negligent businesses.

"Light Bulb" concludes with a male doll holding an energy-efficient light bulb. "You're doing your part," the ad assures us. "It's our job to help government & industry do theirs."

This message of gentle aggression is fast replaced by the image of a panda, an animal known to unfailingly melt hearts -- or in extreme conditions, cause brain explosions.

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by Angela Natividad    Jan- 7-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Cause, Commercials, Magazine, Online, Television



Because Who's NOT Trying to Get into a Disco Queen's Pants?

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For its Grease-tacular Disco Pant, American Apparel slays another guileless chick on its altar of unrepentantly exploitative ad banners. Meet Shermine, who loves! disco!

Like our compromised heroine at 2AM, the ad dramatically blacks out with the closing sell: LE DISCO PANT.

American Apparel: sure, it's seedy as all hell. But if you've followed it as long as we have, then you must admire its unwavering loyalty to a single brand persona: rain or shine, in sickness and in health, in grayscale or by low-budget lamplight.

Even Microsoft can't be that consistent.

by Angela Natividad    Jan- 7-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Online, Trends and Culture



Madonna Spreads Wide for Marc Jacobs and LV

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Jeremy Dante -- a human repository of unbearably fashionable things -- sent us more imagery from the ongoing Madonna for Marc Jacobs/Louis Vuitton campaign.

These shots are decidedly more burlesque and pushy than the last ones, which pushed the aesthetic envelope but still maintained a semblance of cool grace and timeless decadence, yada-yada.

Hear me out. Madonna rocks hard and all, but she's past the point where we're willing to see her deep-throat lollies or -- heaven forbid! -- give us a youthfully woozy crotch shot in her Diamond Dog undyroos.

Diggin' this naughty spread of her draped over the chairs, though. It's so Virgin meets the New Wave.

by Angela Natividad    Jan- 7-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Celebrity, Magazine, Poster



Versus Wants to See Your Hooha

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Sporting site Versus has launched a recent promotion entitled Show Me Your V. Yes, this is where that is going. Of the promotion Yahoo Sports blog Puck Daddy wrote, "Maybe our minds are so far in the gutter that we've got rats scurrying across them, but even Roger Moore's James Bond would believe this double entendre is a tad too telegraphed."

A thunderstorm of commentary followed.

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by Steve Hall    Jan- 6-09    
Topic: Campaigns, Online, Racy, Strange



Angry Whopper Bites Back.

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Fast on the heels of its unscrupulous Whopper Virgin campaign (and the melodramatic responses it inspired), Crispin Porter + Bogusky introduce us to Burger King's Angry Whopper.

Infused with jalapenos and onions grown by disgruntled (read: sadistic and utterly unhinged) farmers, this hot-headed burger promises to "bite you back."

Red-faced yet? Go compose an angry-gram, courtesy of the King's darker side.

We like how the disclaimer reads, "Angry-Grams are intended to be humorous and should not be used with an intent to harass." Guess I should start rethinking my wry subject-line combinations of "mother" and "whore."

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by Angela Natividad    Jan- 6-09    
Topic: Campaigns, Online, Television



Breakfast Cereal Club, Sam L. J. Pushes Broadband, Cuts at Ogilvy

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- Jack Morton Worldwide, Almighty, Weber Shandwick and Google join Citizen Schools to help kids succeed.

- Which Dog are You?

- "They only met once, but they stayed crunchy forever."

- Sam L. Jackson fronts for Virgin Media Broadband.

- "Fast casual" wha...? McD's training film.

- UK's Benylin is in the dog house for using ads to teach people how to call in sick.

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Dunkin': You Don't Have to Be Bright to Be a Go-Getter!

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You kin' do it!" Dunkin Donuts exclaims in the 2009 debut of its new ad campaign, where people like you! power through everyday life with the will and guilelessness of Special Olympics athletes.

Both efforts remind us "America runs on Dunkin'" -- much the way cars run on petrol and and tin men run on oil. It's a shorter way of saying you don't need to be super or have a super job; you just need the fuel necessary to push your colorless millstone up that steep, steep hill. Every. Single. Day. Forever.

By the way, "get an egg-white flatbread for only $1.99 when you buy a medium hot coffee."

Campy, approachable and Common-Man-relevant -- a nice step up from last year's work, which also showcased coffee-fueled Avg. Joes doing painfully ordinary things.

Work by Hill Holliday/Boston.

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by Angela Natividad    Jan- 6-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Television



Charmin Half-Asses Casting Call Campaign

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In the last full week of December, Charmin launched what appears to be the beginning of a casting call campaign for a new bear mascot. (It isn't clear what went wrong with the old ones. Maybe too much tissue fondling.)

The guy who passed this to us called it "definitely a worthy laugh from the guys at Publicis," but he was clearly lying through his typing fingers. Besides a casting video for this sloppy specimen of the Ursidae family, uploaded two weeks ago, there's nothin' else going on.

Notably, at least one commenter expressed interest in the campaign -- but he joined YouTube six days ago. Also, one of the two videos he uploaded is pro-Charmin, so we're guessing he didn't find the effort via StumbleUpon.

Hey, Publicis ... you awake? For inspiration, look to Milk, which shat this gimmick months ago and at least tried running with it.

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by Angela Natividad    Jan- 6-09    
Topic: Bad, Brands, Campaigns, Online



Virgin Atlantic: Still Red-Hot After All These Years

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To celebrate Virgin Atlantic's 25th anni, "Still Red Hot" brings us back to June 22nd, 1984, when London's Gatwick Airport changed forever.

On a day that would otherwise be forever defined by a miner's strike, Virgin Atlantic's premier crew of red-clad flight attendants broke the mundanity with their bitch-watch-me walks and winning smiles. A revolving ticker overhead ties fiction to fact: Virgin's first-ever flight route, VS001 to Newark, is ON TIME.

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