HBO has launched a new campaign in Latin America with the tagline "Si no fuera por HBO, no escaparíamos de la rutina (If it weren't for HBO, we would not escape from routine). The campaign, which consists of five (three of which can be viewed here, here and here) spots, shows a series of individuals having a bad day (a visit from auditors, a difficult legal case, a traffic ticket) but when they think of HBO, they realize life isn't so bad and there's always a way to get out of the routine.
The background music for the campaign is the David Bowie song "Heroes" which gets all aspirational. The spots are beautifully shot and, while HBO is certainly not going to solve all life's problems, the campaign does a nice job making a connection between powerful things that happen on the screen and powerful things that can happen in life.
The campaign was created by which worked with Trebejos Films. Future efforts along this vein are planned for the remainder of 2005 and into 2006.
Adrants readers Steven Hirst points us to this new commercial, billed as unreleased and called "Ouch!", for Xbox which pits an ex-girlfriend and an ex-boyfriend against each other in increasingly ridiculous stunts to make the other jealous. Thankfully, Xbox Live is there to offer a healthier form of combat. The ad is served from a site that asks a few questions about the spot, asks viewers what's the most painful thing they've done and collects contact info for entry into a drawing for prizes that include an Xbox consoles with video camera and games, a Samsung TV and a Samsung MP3 player.
It's a nice tie in between the notion of X's fighting and Xbox's ability to provide a platform for the fight. Clearly, someone at LAVA Communications, the agency that created the piece, wrote a creative brief that plainly illustrated the product benefit.
Preconceived notions the session entitled "Kick Ass Creative" would be drenched in self-congratulatory praise for pet creative work and new age strategies were clearly confirmed. The session, led by Ad Age Publishing VP and Editorial Director David Klein, included panelists Carat Interactive EVP Creative Director Mike Yapp, Agency.com Creative Director Dorian Sweet, Avenue A/Razorfish ECD Brooke Nanberg and Organic Inc. ECD Colleen DeCourcy.
Why we didn't find this first is beyond us but we thank Adland for pointing to it. Ad agency poster child Crispin Porter Bogusky has created Pink Panty Poker, a strip poker game that's easy to play and quick to reward with hot models tearing their clothes off for your viewing pleasure. An admirable effort. CPB copywriter and VP Creative Director Scott Linnen explains the project to Adverblog here.
An ad for London-based Accurist watch company which ran in Glamour and showed a near naked woman reclining in a chair with her left hand in her crotch above the tagline, "Me Time," was banned by the Advertising Standard Authority which deemed it sexually suggestive and likely to cause serious or widespread offense to readers. Accurist, apparently not having seen their own ad, denies the ad has any association with masturbatory imagery. One reader who complained seems to think masturbation is somehow offensive and demeaning to women. It seems both sides are having difficulty facing reality with Accurist plainly denying a near naked woman with her hand between her legs might possibly be interpreted as sexual and the complainer refusing to admit we've progressed beyond the pre-Kinsey world where masturbation was taboo.
Of course, this doesn't mean masturbating women in ads is a good thing but let's not mince words. In the ad it looks like she is. And, there's nothing wrong with masturbation which is certainly not demeaning to women.
Accurist has a series of these ads on its website including another crotch grab ad.
Unilever has launched a site called Introducing Domestic Donald which features a cartoon body topped with Donald Trump's head. Spouting off Trumpy one-liners, The Donald wanders about a kitchen responding to requests to do the laundry, wash the dishes, prepare dinner, wash clothes and mop the floor. The whole thing's a sweepstakes offering for a "Luxury Weekend With Donald Trump" that requires the entry of a code found on stickers affixed to promotional packs of All detergent.
This is the kind of online promotion we like. Simple. Uncomplex. Moderately amusing. And quick enough to get through without having to waste too much time. And painless enough to be done with before becoming annoyed
To promote its new Range Rover Sport, Land Rover has launched a website called, "The New Rush," which launches you into a night time cityscape complete with nightclub and mysterious people on the sidewalk. All of this, of course, is interspersed with touch points that explain the vehicle's features. While we think this an engaging and information filled experience, one Adrants reader thinks there's a drug overtone to it writing, "...it appears RUSH is some sort of red light district type nightclub with all sorts of party-goers hanging out front and a blinking red R florescent sign. Also, when you roll your mouse over one of the couples, a conversation bubble pops up that says, "What lines." Now being a bona fide drug researcher, I can assure you that this can have double and triple meanings especially since this creative relies more on heroin based sensibilities then cocaine ones." We've retired from the drug scene so we'll have to leave it to those in the filed to offer further comment.
The campaign is also supported by outdoor pointing to the website.
Wednesday, it was Mitsubishi's turn. Today it's Batman's turn. The "caped crusader" has taken over the Yahoo homepage with a bunch of flying bats and a fairly friendly half screen, window shade ad unit promoting the upcoming movie. And no, it doesn't work with Firefox.
For Your IE's Only
So, today, Mitsubishi launched their cool-ish Yahoo page take over to promote the new 2006 Eclipse. By using the a,s,d,w keys, visitors can drive the car around the Yahoo page before heading to the car's microsite. It's engaging enough as page takeovers go but we have one concern. It's hard to believe that most marketers, especially a supposedly savvy marketer like Mitsubishi, still think Internet Explorer is the only browser worth designing for. You see, we use Firefox here because, well, it's just, like, way better than Explorer. We also spend our entire day writing about advertising. You'd think Mitsubishi would want those who write about advertising to easily and without need to fire up another browser, view their page takeover creative. Apparently the 10 to 20 percent of us that use Firefox don't matter. Actually, maybe that's a good thing. Those that use Firefox also use it because most of this fancy stuff doesn't work with Firefox and we like that little "feature" just fine.
Johnny's Drunken Stupor
Adrants reader and Animal Publisher Bucky Turco comments on the Johnnie Walker "Keep Walking" outdoor campaign which has featured imagery that conveys forward motion or progress. Recently, Turco noticed an execution of the campaign that used dominoes as imagery and questioned the choice of that visual as it relates to spririts advertising, commenting to Adrants, "The other day I came across this Icon ad that featured swirling lines of falling dominoes. The image of falling dominoes seems a dubious illustration to use for progress, especially for a spirits brand. Does it mean that if you don't drink enough JW your life will begin to "fall like dominoes." Could it mean 'Keep Walkin' fast this way so your drinking troubles don't catch up with you? Or is simply 'Keep Walking,' even if its not in a straight line?"
Spirits advertising has to walk a fine line between imbuing a sense of adventure and excitement and the plain truth alcohol can make you drunk and stupid. Perhaps this illusory image of dominoes gets a bit too close to crossing that line.