This week in Los Angeles, El Pollo Loco will deluge ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC with a fresh wave of ads -- toting its $0.69 Taco al Carbon, among other cheap fare -- right around primetime.
Don't wince: the campaign's being called Family Stimulus Deals, and El Pollo Loco CEO Steve Carley is front and center. Ads are expectedly political in nature, the kind of work you'd expect to see from a Senate member-to-be, except they shill chicken instead of community roadwork. Funny thing is, for a spread so riddled with shticks the whole thing falls flat.
Sometimes using your CEO just doesn't cut it. And it's a bit late to riff off the Stimulus Plans circulating the Gov like so many pigeons.
See "Gracias," a dubbed Spanish ad, by Ideas; others, including English-language ones, are on the Official El Pollo Loco YouTube site.
Visit ihavethebug.com to take a quiz and find out whether you've got the "travel bug." The exercise -- short, playful and mildly entertaining -- serves two purposes: to flatter you and drive you to the Travel Channel. (If so inclined, note requisite Facebook tie-in at bottom left. What, don't you want all your friends to know you've got "excellent gumption, chutzpah"?)
Internet stuff put together by Razorfish. The Travel Bug TV spot, orchestrated by Moroch, is done in a faux-serious Big Pharma tone. You've got sufferers, playfully agonized; you've got gratuitous shots of people running on beaches. The Travel Channel's the cure, but like all drugs, you're warned it may only aggravate the symptoms.
Ad's expectedly corny, even a little dated in its humour; but the site quiz ties the gimmick back to Travel Channel shows well enough. At the very least, it sparked discussion: last night me and a friend were all, "What exactly is a sexy beach?" Verdict's still out.
Shots Mag draws our attention to Wieden + Kennedy's "The Light" for Nike. It's one of those soul-of-the-run spots: all about the breath, the pace, the solitude of the sport and the community it simultaneously sparks.
You get the sense that runners inhabit a part of space/time that the rest of Suburbia's completely unaware of.
More intense and less playful than 72andSunny's "Men vs. Women." Classic Nike though.
Timberland's "Delirium" compares buying nature-friendly shoes to a scenario in which a dire-straits castaway is rescued by nature herself. It's stirring material, particularly if you found a certain film, involving Tom Hanks and a volleyball, emotionally resonant.
Maybe a little heavy for a shoe label, but hey: if we can take a sentimental education from Coke, no harm in getting emo-schooled by Timbo.
By Leagas Delaney.
- An account supervisor at Lowe in Zurich has asked us to yank a recent post featuring a vampire whose fangs are made of OB tampons. It's unapproved client work. (That means it's not running anywhere and, he says, it never will.) I guess this means God does exist.
- Quite possibly the most amazing brownies ever.
- Wisconsin rebrands. We're still not going.
- Coke Zero's The Morning After (always a promising title).
- George Parker says sorry for using one of his favourite pet names on Susan Bratton, but manages to get some pokes in about an interview she did with Julie Roehm. You remember her, right? No? Probably best.
- Obama's face for Turkish bank.
VCCP put together this no-frills but amiable spot for Jordans Country Crisp, a UK-based cereal label that differentiates itself by spotlighting its own mom-and-popness.
We like how the story of the cereal plays out on the box, and how the wee farmer on the tractor calls out as he scrolls by. So granola. Tagline: "You can taste we care."
Jordans hasn't released a major ad campaign in four years; this also marks its first animated piece. Voiceover by Bill Oddie, whom VCCP said was chosen because of his "association with nature and conservation." Don't know about all that, but he's definitely got a good bedtime story manner. We feel warmy.
The battle of the sexes gets all literal on yo' ass in "Men vs Women" by 72andSunny. Propelled forth by the challenge of racking up the most kilometres for their gender, Nike-decked runners take to the streets in the playful spirit of competition. (We totally eat this stuff up. Remember those Mia Hamm vs. Michael Jordan Gatorade ads?)
Neat thing is, this isn't just an ad. If you're rooting for any particular team, and provided your knees are in fine shape, join in the fun at NikePlus.com. (Digital material by AKQA.)
Note how everybody seems to own a Macbook Pro. o_O Nike and Apple have collaborated before on a Nike + iPod clothing line, so it should come as no surprise they're still bedtime buddies. Song's cool, too: Run (I'm a Natural Disaster) by Gnarls Barkley.
- @MackCollier, in the thick of SXSW, captures social media junkies in unnatural habitats.
- Trojan continues that slightly uncomfortable pro-STD reverse psychology thing with an a la carte booth. Samples of genital warts, anyone?
- Mark Cuban invests in poo-inducing pizza. Just read the story, man.
- More 'net-based teen angst.
- "Is this the most sexually explicit ad ever?" In a word, no. We're still kinda confused about what dude was doing with the Six Hour Power jar, and it isn't immediately clear if he's going to bang his secretary or just give her a really peppy memo. It could go either way ... but the reason why this ad fails is, we don't care where it goes.
- Why Jason Calacanis employed a felon -- or how to handle negative press.
"Happiness Factory 3" continues Coke's Happiness Factory/Open Happiness campaign with a Monday-friendly beginning we can all identify with. Mid-yawn, a guy hits up a Coke vending machine, compelling all the Wonderland creatures inside to yawn too.
There's a bit of authoritative clapping, then some feel-good pop music kicks in. Everyone snaps open their Cokes, and both worlds bloom into quotidian activity.
Skittles continues its mile-high "WTF?" spree with "Transplant," which illustrates a new pack of cross-breed candies with a guy who recovers from an operation -- only to find he's been crossed with a dude named Jose.
There's this weird moment where a pack of Skittles gets tossed hither and yon, then they eat them while facing each other and delicately licking -- kissing, really -- their own fingers.
By TBWA\Chiat\Day\NY. See its last little bit of magic.