Baseball Classic Takes its Message to the Global Village

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There's something about watching people represent their countries in some sporting cause that makes you thirst to be represented yourself. That's the card ESPN plays in "My Team," a global marketing effort for the '09 World Baseball Classic ("March 5th to the 23rd!").

Famous faces in the ad, representing in their own tongues and everything, include Jorge Cantu, Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez and Ichiro Suzuki. We felt the compulsion to wave a flag, or at least one of those giant signs shaped like an index finger, and we don't even like baseball.

Produced by ESPN and agency DCode. The spot falls under the catchy slogan "National pastime. International stars," which went live on February 14. English/Spanish print, online, radio and outdoor executions will roll out after February 23.

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by Angela Natividad    Feb-20-09    
Topic: Commercials, Television



Is That An Animation Biting My Ass?

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Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, San Francisco is out with another Sprint NASCAR commercial and, thankfully, there are no short shorts in the one. This one's called Speedway and it hypes the NASCAR Sprint Series and the ability to watch it on your Sprint phone.

Having just caught Tom Cruise's Days of Thunder on cable recenlty, we can identify with the on-track mania depicted in this commercial. Though we're not entirely clear why Goodby decided to get MassMarket to visual effectify the spot into something resembling a video game. Oh alright, we'll agree it's far more interesting that just watching "regular" cars crash into each other and it does capture the take-no-prisoners competitive aspect of the sport.

by Steve Hall    Feb-20-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Good



Ominous Helen Bamber Ads Highlight Abuse and Trafficking

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JWT Dubai recently created two spots for the Helen Bamber Foundation. In one, Vows, a couple stand before a priest as if you exchange vows. Vows are certainly exchange but they are not of the normal variety.

In another, Auction, a room full of seedy-looking rich people continue to outdo each other's bids for the auctioned item onstage...which turns out to be a child.

Both spots do a decent job of twisting your perceptions and creating a sense of suspense.

by Steve Hall    Feb-20-09    
Topic: Campaigns, Cause, Commercials, Good



Ibiza Targets the Skaters of Yesteryear

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"Skaters," an ad for the Seat Ibiza, features a beautiful cover of Forever Young that made us tuck a chin in our collective hand and sigh, because we were thinking about Freaks and Geeks and childhood in general. Vintage footage of kids on skateboards only fueled the cozy flames of nostalgia.

Then there was this awkward cut to a car. Everything changed: the feel of the ad, the imagery, the sounds. And then our souls, which were floating up somewhere above our heads, collapsed onto concrete.

We get what agency Atletico International, and production company Agosto, wanted to do: tie the Ibiza into youth and freedom, personify that spirit in a vehicle that in some ways is decidedly less whimsical. (Not much wind in your hair, no risk of elbow-scrapes.)

But it could have been done better.

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by Angela Natividad    Feb-19-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Television



Yep, NASCAR's Still NASCAR. Next!

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Superfad partnered with The Martin Agency to jazz NASCAR up for the Sprint Cup.

The result of this collabo was "Dogfight," an adrenaline-infused cat/mouse game between two NASCAR drivers. It was cool, it felt intense while still being tame, which is the line NASCAR's always walked.

On the print side is a triage of pieces that look like they were drawn on the binder covers of rice rocket fans. One's at left; see another and another.

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by Angela Natividad    Feb-19-09    
Topic: Brands, Commercials, Events, Television



T. Rowe Price Goes Granular to Illustrate Grand Plan

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The best investors are people that can see the big picture based on the little rivulets of action that trickle into it: hoarding licenses to all sans-serif typefaces, for example, right before Web 2.0 made Helvetica a star.

(*shifts feet in awkward pursuit of a better illustration. Decides to move on instead*)

To demonstrate is ability to see the grand tapestry by virtue of its many intersecting threads, T. Rowe Price tapped JWT/New York to oversee a pair of ads in which small events bleed into bigger ones. Meanwhile, a soothing voiceover compels audiences with its amazing ability to synopsize The Economist.

Production work by Psyop. Ads below.

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by Angela Natividad    Feb-19-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Television



Coffee Bellagio'd, Oakley Profits, Missy Swears Again

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- Ever seen the Bellagio fountain in Las Vegas? We have and it's pretty cool. But all we have for you today is this Necafe ad which imitates the Bellagio fountain...with coffee beans.

- So how do you hype something as boring as directory assistance services? With an onslaught of eight spots, of course.

- Missy likes to swear...and watch people swear.

- Oh look! Some good news. Despite the recession, longtime MEA Digital client Oakley posted a 19 percent year over year increase in holiday revenue from its online marketing campaigns. Yay!

- Forbes thinks the graphic design design business is snooty. Jim Walls begs to differ.

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by Steve Hall    Feb-18-09    
Topic: Commercials



2010 Lexus RX is the Stuff of Technological Fancy

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Team One gave us a "YouTube sneak preview" (wait, what?) of its All-New! 2010 Lexus RX ads.

The theme of each is "driver inspired" -- think magical cranes pulling obstacles out of traffic, or an assembly line in your house. All this is to say the Lexus is a perfectly calibrated luxury instrument whose specs revolve around you.

Visually interesting and slightly surreal, as per usual. We really liked "Intersection."

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by Angela Natividad    Feb-18-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Online, Television



It Must Be An iPhone Ad, Right?

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Oh look! White background. Dancing icons. Lots of animation. Music plays a primary role. It's an iPhone ad! Oops, sorry. It's an LG Arena ad and it's being hyped by SocialMedia8. So make them happy. Link to it! Embed it! Forward it to a friend! Post it on Facebook! Bl`og about it! Tweet about it! Digg it!

Or...just lament the fact it's yet another iPhone wannabe.

by Steve Hall    Feb-17-09    
Topic: Commercials



Bathing Beauties More Delicious Than Napping Sumo Wrestlers

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And in today's weird for weird's sake, we have this commercial for Wai Wai in which fat, swollen noodles become lithe, slim...hot noodles. It's not clear, though, why the guy doesn't spend at least a few minutes enjoying the site of his lithe, slim...and hot noodles before he scarfs them down like a Suleman kid fighting for the last scrap at the dinner table.

by Steve Hall    Feb-17-09    
Topic: Commercials, Strange










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