Christmas Tree Gets Needled by Audi

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Yes, it's car ad. Yes, it shows the car. Yes, it shows the car driving briskly on a snow covered road. Yes, it's Christmas (oh, sorry...holiday) themed. But this one is a bit different. Not that much different but different enough to keep our attention. but only just. And, if we arrived home with that poorly cared for thing atop our car, we'd head right back to the farm and get another. Yea, yea, Audis can drive fast on snow but not that fast.

It was created by Venables, Bell & Partners and edited by Phoenix Editorial & Designs. And despite what you might think, we like it. Just the right amount of sell. Just the right amount of holiday tie in. And just the right amount of hook to make it interesting.

by Steve Hall    Dec- 6-07    
Topic: Commercials, Creative Commentary, Good



AMEX Urges People to Become Creepy Avatars, Sing Karaoke

Trying to capitalize on the success OfficeMax has had with ElfYourself, American Express' new Holiday Rockstar campaign invites users to turn themselves into one of Oddcast's "virtual characters."

If you're not familiar, Oddcast creates those creepy characters whose eyes follow your cursor and start blabbing away without first asking permission.

Though songs from Mariah Carey's holiday album are strangely missing, the service also allows you to sing one of three holiday songs by calling a number. You can then send your holiday greeting to a loved one, most likely resulting in uncomfortable laughter.

However, when we tried uploading two different headshots, it ended in the window crashing, immediately evoking the disastrous SimpsonizeMe tool. Good thing there are back-up characters.

by Albert Kugel    Dec- 4-07    




Range Rover's Gates Softly Soothes

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If you're sick of winding mountain road car commercials, check out this mountainous region road car website for Land Rover. Really, it's different. As you wind your way through beautiful vistas while an orchestrally supported piano swells in the background, you can stop at various points to check out the vehicles features. It's all very Zen. And slow. And visually beautiful. And slow. And soothing. And slow. And...zzzzz...oh, sorry, we fell asleep there for a minute.

OK, now that we've downed our grande, non-fat, extra hot, extra shot, no whip, no foam, white mocha latte, we feel better and can you the site also offers you the ability to select the features you are interested in and create a customized, downloadable PDF for your offline viewing pleasure which is a good thing because you're going to need to lay down in bed to read it as you drift gently into a restful sleep, soothed by the site's relaxing music and...zzz...

by Steve Hall    Dec- 4-07    
Topic: Creative Commentary, Good, Online



Belvedere Heads Downtown, Kicks Grey Goose's Uptown Ass

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It must suck being a premium vodka maker when you're not one of the two or three brands that, for whatever unknown reason, seem to take off and get adopted by those enjoy emptying their wallet just to get drunk. While Grey Goose sold 700,000 cases in 2006, Belvedere sold just 380,000.

In a new $20 million Berlin Cameron-created campaign, Belvedere is crashing the party with ads featuring Vincent Gallo and his posse literally crashes uptown parties with downtown attitude. There's also a Terry Richardson-shot print campaign with lots of red lipstick and provocative stares.

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by Steve Hall    Dec- 3-07    
Topic: Campaigns, Creative Commentary



Scorsese Makes Us Throw Up...And Heap Praise

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Even when a man as important and legendary as Martin Scorsese is involved, ads which spend half their time on the "making of" aspects and credits of those involved always seem egocentrically forced. That is not to say this creation from JWT Spain for Freixenet Cava isn't good. It is. It's very good. In fact, it's amazing if you cut off the "making of" puffery and credits at the end. Because when you layer on commentary from JWT Executive Creative Director Alex Martinez like, "never before has art been so close to and tied in with advertising," if sort of makes you want to throw up...a little...in your mouth.

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by Steve Hall    Dec- 3-07    
Topic: Best, Creative Commentary, Video



Stanley Works Wants You to F#@k Things Up

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Without really saying it because, after all, what marketer really can in their ad campaigns, Stanley Works is telling us to fuck things up or, more precisely, to fuck things up beyond all repair using its Stanley Fubar site. So if you want to get your aggression out smashing toilets, sinks, pianos, armoires and even a bunny (well, not really) with the strangest tool you've ever seen, Stanley provides you those items and a burly construction crew to aid you with your destructive tendencies.

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by Steve Hall    Nov-15-07    
Topic: Creative Commentary, Games, Good, Online



Indian Agency Wants Testicles, Not Boobs. We'll Take the Boobs

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In a recruitment ad, India agency Concept Communication wants your testicles. Yes, that's what they want. In fact, the headline of a recent recruitment ad reads, "Testicles Wanted." After that not so subtle reduction of potential employees to nothing more than a body part, the copy goes on to empathize with advertising professionals who are apparently sick of being called names such as "postman" (must be an Indian thing) and "person without balls." Somehow it's still perfectly OK for the agency to recruit a sack of bloated balls instead of an actual person.

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by Steve Hall    Nov-15-07    
Topic: Agencies, Creative Commentary, Magazine, Opinion



Get Down with the Homies with the ad:tech NY Ad-Jive Dictionary

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You can't call yourself a new media advertiser if you're not hip to the jive, and ad:tech is a great place to brush up on this crucial skill-set.

But it can be tough to keep up. With that, I give you the 2007 edition of the Official ad:tech New York Ad-Jive Dictionary. Use this knowledge well, and you're sure to be the life of the break room.

Better still, you'll confirm your CEO's conviction that burning $5K to send you to an ad conference was a very intelligent idea.

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Perrier Cools Hot Thong-Clad Ass

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Apparently tiny, cover-nothing thongs can actually make you hot (temperature hot, that is) according to this French Perrier ad featuring a woman in a thong seemingly cooling her overly hot ass with a bottle of the stuff. This sort of advertising is still acceptable (thankfully in some respects) in places outside the U.S. and God forbid if we American get gratuitous and degrade women (and men) into objects of desire.

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by Steve Hall    Nov- 1-07    
Topic: Creative Commentary, Opinion, Racy



Oregon Tourism And Horizon Air Like Maps

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It seems those in the Pacific Northwest think alike when it comes to travel and tourism advertising. In early September, we took a look at a campaign for Horizon Air which highlighted the 200 mile stretch of Interstate 5 between Seattle and Portland. It's referred to The Slog for all the oddities and annoyances along the way that make taking a Horizon Air (of course) flight to traverse the distance instead.

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