But we get ahead of ourselves. The saga begins when AdReview, having taken temporary leave of its senses, consented to serve on an advertising-awards jury in Warsaw. The Poles have some of the best advertising in New Europe, but it is still earth and it was still ad awards, so most of the stuff was unwatchable.
The food and the company were very nice. The rest was like Abu Ghraib, only with less clowning around.
Until we encountered Zajac, who is a very badly behaved bunny rabbit. Described as a "woodland terrorist," Zajac shows up in a series of 10-second flash-animations taking sexual liberties with a bear, an elephant, a bumblebee, a porcupine, a squirrel, an owl, a horse. You get the idea. He is furtive. He approaches from behind and strikes in an instant.
Now try to put yourself in our shoes. We've spent seven or eight hours watching people proudly hoisting national beers. We've been treated to endless comedy vignettes, such as the fellow on a blind date looking for the girl brandishing Tic Tacs, only to go into the park and find every girl brandishing Tic Tacs. Can you see, perhaps, under those conditions how funny and charming a furry sex offender can be?
Take our word for it. The answer is: VERY funny and charming.
Do not misunderstand. This is not shockvertising, which we despise on the grounds of cynicism and discourtesy. No, Zajac is not a TV woodland terrorist whom you encounter raping a porcupine by the mere innocent act of switching on the tube. To see him, you must innocently answer your phone-your mobile phone. In Europe, SMS messaging of video images is easy, cheap and increasingly common.
If you are surprised by Zajac taking a horse from behind, you can't blame some mass medium, like a TV network, or an advertiser. You can blame only the friend or relative who sent it to you. But you won't blame anybody, because if someone sends you Zajac, somebody knows you will laugh.
Just as the jury did, till the snot was coming out of our noses. Yes, it's vulgarity. But it is highly targeted vulgarity.
That, however, is not why we awarded Zajac the Kreatura Grand Prix. We honored him because he represents the future. He is both the ad and the content in a media-marketing perpetual motion machine. When he shows up on your phone, you are directed to bombadoo.com/zajac, a novelty-image Web site that sells funny animations, music videos, screen savers, etc. There you pay a couple of bucks to SMS Zajac to your boyfriend, your next-door neighbor and your cousin, who do the same in their immediate circles.
We can tell you this for certain: Zajac may indeed be a very bad little bunny, but he is a terrific ad for himself.
Review 3.5 stars