Hey, Did You Hear? Advertising Still Demeans Women.

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Alex Leo over at HuffPo wrote a post on five sexist trends the ad world just can't shake. The following tropes "use stereotypes and violence to prey on our most vile desires" -- and probably aren't going anywhere, despite "cultural outrage" and "personal boredom."

The list (in far less detail than Leo provides):

o Bondage. One awesome example is the ad at left, for Remy Martin's "Things Are Getting Interesting" campaign. Experience has taught us naughty domina girls sell more than liquor, however; they also push PSPs with whip-cracking finesse.

o Rape. Illustrated by this ad by Dolce & Gabbana -- which I think had more of a "gang-bang" in mind than a "rape," per se. It's a feathery-fine distinction.

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by Angela Natividad    Dec- 9-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Creative Commentary, Opinion



Shopping Mall Claims Holidays Are NOT About Spending Money

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Last night during Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown!, Charlie complained about the flagrant commercialization of Christmas. If creatives ever felt the way he did, they're probably well over it out of professional necessity. I know I am, and I just blog here.

Adding to our jaded perspective of how things operate in Ad Land's warped universe, Cherry Creek North -- a high-end shopping mall, mind you -- worked with CULTIVATOR ADVERTISING & DESIGN/Denver to launch The Yuletide Project. Its goal is to remind holiday shoppers that the holidays are about more than frequent wallet molestation.

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by Angela Natividad    Dec- 9-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Magazine, Online, Outdoor, Strange



At Crowd's Command, Getty Shoots a Dwarf. In Skates.

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To maintain its iron grip on the stock photo industry, Getty records searches and commissions shoots when enough people have searched for an image that can't be found.

To wit: a truckload of people recently queried "rollerblading dwarf." As promised, Getty had its photographers whip out the ambient lights and hunt down a highly mobile midget.

The result is at left. And because mass consumption of "rollerblading dwarf" images is just soooo quirky, agency Think Meets Do launched a Getty-whoring Facebook group in its honour: Search for a Rollerblading Dwarf on Getty Images.

Yeah, there probably could've been a better name for that.

Future shoots (those likely to be repurposed as an ad campaign, anyway) include shooting a crying lobster, and a llama in high heels.

by Angela Natividad    Dec- 8-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Online, Promotions, Social, Strange



Stove Top Stuffing Keeps Bus Patrons Toasty

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There are few things more soothing than warm stuffing out of the gutted sternum of a turkey. And with help from JCDecaux, this soothingest of comfort food is warming bus patrons at 10 bus shelters in Chicago.

The Stove Top ads -- radiant with warmth -- feature a heaping bowl of stuffing, tossed and tasty looking and beckoning hungry passengers home.

"Cold, provided by winter," the ad reads. "Warmth, provided by us. It's a good night for Stove Top."

Find stuffing-hot bus shelters in the Chi through December. Reps will also be handing out (steaming?) samples. Work by DraftFCB.

by Angela Natividad    Dec- 8-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Good, Guerilla, Outdoor, Poster



The Cobalt: A Cred-Bereft Ugly that Can't Be Painted Over

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Snake Plissken, who sent us this lead, called the hip-hop-inspired Chevy Cobalt Labs subsite "an identity crisis in website form."

After surveying the features -- Tricked or Trashed (think Hot-or-Not), Mod Street (where you can visually vandalize your own Cobalt) and Track Challenge (where you can race other site visitors) -- we're inclined to agree.

We also wonder why Honda never tried anything similar with the rice-rocket Civic crowd. Unlike the Cobalt, which is stretching the limits of our imagination with this Pimp My Ride crap, that was a car kids liked to play with.

by Angela Natividad    Dec- 8-08    
Topic: Bad, Brands, Campaigns, Online



DC Snowboard Ads: Now Infused with Kitsch!

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They're versatile! They're powerful! They have beards and many adjectives!

Lean back while this Al Borland-looking dude and his tanned-but-silent sidekick sell you a snowboard for all seasons. Look familiar? They should! Your host is Billy Mays, high king of insomnia-enabling infomercials, and his snowboarding homie is Iikka Backstrom.

"Enjoy the ride more!" with DC's new line of snowboards and boots. More infomercial riffs here.

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One More Bedtime Pharma that Promises to Last All Night Long

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Last week pyjama-clad women on mobile beds circulated Los Angeles, using spammy typefaces and a warped colour scheme to ask the $65,000 question:

WHAT DO 75 MILLION WOMEN WANT MOST IN BED?

If you guessed fiber-rich cereal, you are so, so wrong!

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by Angela Natividad    Dec- 8-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Events, Guerilla, Strange



Geico 'Right Sizes' Ad Campaign With Minimalistic Kash

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Perhaps in an efforts to identify with trying economic times or, perhaps, to give us a break from the Gecko and the Caveman, The Martin Agency is out with two commercials featuring the goofy character, Kash, who, well...who does nothing but sits there as the cast around him wonders just what the little guy is all about.

And the song. Don't get me started. David Gianatasio has that one covered.

by Steve Hall    Dec- 8-08    
Topic: Campaigns, Commercials, Strange



Ben & Jerry Cows Seduce Rudolph with Chunky Monkey

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Ben & Jerry's Caring Dairy releases a sing-along Christmas Cowal. Like Love Actually's "Christmas is All Around," it's campy in a way that forces you to watch.

Diggin' the banjo action in the background.

By Cake/London. Download track here. Proceeds from the effort go to the RSPCA.

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by Angela Natividad    Dec- 8-08    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Online



Microsoft Does Softwear. No, That's Not a Typo.

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Having failed (twice!) to woo young defectors with ads, Microsoft tries appealing to their unending quest for ironic shirts.

The so-called Softwear line of tees joins Crispin Porter + Bogusky's ongoing "I'm a PC" campaign. Common -- who already appears in ads for Microsoft's Zune -- infused the shirts with retro cred and his own '80s-inspired designs.

Variants include:

o The DOS Tangle: "The first logo you saw on a screen."
o The 101: "Learn to speak the language." Oooh, binary.
o The Misdemeanor: "Everyone deserves a second chance."

There's something the world needs now: mugshots of Bill Gates prowling the streets.

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