Published on .

Most Popular
ESPN: "Big Buddies" :30,

Wieden & Kennedy, Portland, Ore.

A poker-face announcer, ESPN anchor Dan Patrick, delivers a serious piece of news: ESPN wants to give something back to the community. "That's why a lot of us are involved in the Big Buddy program, a chance to give children something they would otherwise never see."

This is what viewers see: Jayson Williams of the New Jersey Nets, Sam Cassell of the Milwaukee Bucks and Stuart Scott, a SportsCenter anchor, offering to play a friendly pickup game of hoops with little kids. The game deteriorates and the grownups become worse than children; they scream at the kids and knock them over. Obviously, ESPN's target audience is guys just like these. They haven't grown up yet. They must love this spot. We do, too.


ESPN: "Car" :30

DDB Dallas, Dallas

Director: Mark Foster

Hungry Man

ESPN is now available on the radio. You can listen to it on your Walkman or drive around town listening to it in your car. That's exactly what two young guys are doing in this spot, listening to an ESPN broadcast while sitting in traffic.

The volume needs a little adjusting, however, and the guy in the passenger seat turns around and shrieks, "Louder!" The ESPN broadcast is so darn immediate, you see broadcasters Rick Eisen and Chris Berman just sitting in the backseat doing the show live. Yet another installment in a tried and true deadpan humor campaign.

PGA: "Clay Pigeons" :30

GSD&M, Austin, Texas

Director: Noam Murro

HKM Productions

Golf, the game that belonged to Dad, is now the coolest thing in sports. And with its newfound street credibility, golf advertising is finally going goofy, just like every other sport. In this spot, for the PGA Tour, golf pros Hale Irwin and Chi Chi Rodriquez are shooting skeet, not with guns and buckshot, but with their drivers and golf balls.

The clay pigeons break one after the other, until Irwin misses one. "Got away from you, Hale?" says Mr. Rodriquez. "Yeah," says Mr. Irwin, painfully. "These guys are good," reads the new tagline.

PGA: "Driving Range" :30

GSD&M, Austin, Texas

Director: David Herrington

Blue Mountain Films

Now that golf advertising is goofy, thanks to PGA's "Clay Pigeons" spot, why not make it violent, too. This spot leads the way. A tractor that picks up golf balls putters around a driving range under a hailstorm of balls. One tee shot is so powerful that it slams into the tractor and knocks it over. Who's responsible? Golf pro David Duval. According to the agency, these PGA spots have increased, by 33%, the public's interest in watching PGA tour events. Now that's a direct hit.

ESPN the Magazine: "Cheerleaders" :30

Wieden & Kennedy, Portland, Ore.

Directors: Andy French and Nick Spooner Half-Baked Productions

"Espin the magazine is the magazine for us sports insiders," says a cheerleader, who is obviously an airhead. She stares at the camera, so earnest and yet so dumb. Doesn't she know that ESPN is not a word? It's an acronym. It stands for something. OK, quick. What does it stand for?

In this article: