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SARA LEE'S STRANGE BREW OF SEX AND FOAMED COFFEE

And Other Current TV Commercials of Note

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Sex and Foamed Coffee
Marketer: Sara Lee
Brand: Senseo Coffee
Title: "The Look"
Agency: BBDO North America
This commercial's strange brew of sexual innuendo and foamed coffee made me cringe rather than crave. What an odd idea, to pair a frothing food product with people portrayed to look like they just had sex -- some of them with themselves. A colleague here at AdAge.com who watched the spot with me captured its essence in a single word as the screen faded to black: yecch.

Murder and Mayhem at the Bank
Marketer: Commerce Bank
Brand: Commerce Bank
Title: "Rob"
Agency: Tierney Communications, Philadelphia
In a cinema verite spoof, former 'Seinfeld' star Julia Louis-Drefus grapples with murder and mayhem outside Brand X bank. Customers fall dead or come out in bandages after being charged an arm and a leg for financial services they could have gotten cheaper at Commerce Bank.

Tortured Political Comment
Marketer: MoveOn.org
Brand: Anti-Bush Campaign
Title: "Rumsfeld"
Agency: Zimmerman & Markman, Santa Monica
In the latest creation off its assembly line of high voltage political broadsides, MoveOn.org uses editorial cartoon techniques to skewer President Bush via Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. The only thing missing here are the wires dangling down from the statue's fingertips.

You're Gettin' a Pentium, Dude
Marketer: Intel
Brand: Pentium 4 Processor HT
Title: "Faces"
Agency: Euro RSCG Worldwide, New York
This production is so heavy in special effects that its credits include two 'Prosthetic Make-Up' specialists. But who said it would be easy to get Albert Einstein, Mahatma Gandhi, Leonardo da Vinci, Ludwig van Beethoven and Amelia Earhart together for a commercial shoot in the same high school corridor?

WEEK'S MOST REMEMBERED SPOT
Water Drop Athletes
Marketer: PepsiCo
Brand: Gatorade Propel
Title: "Movement"
Agency: Element 79 Partners

Propel is back with new versions of its splashing droplets ads. From each drop, an athlete magically materializes to keep on playing. If you're one of those cynics who thinks the concept of 'vitamin water' is really silly, think again. More than $200 million worth of Propel was sold last year. Plus, the mass market can't seem to get enough of these drippy commercials. This spot received the highest consumer recall score for the period of May 10-23 in the bi-weekly Intermedia Advertising Group survey.

The Painterly Airline
Marketer: United Airlines
Brand: United Airlines
Title: "Rose"
Agency: Fallon, Minneapolis
'Rose' is the third spot in United Airlines' wonderfully unique series of wordless animations that sell a mood rather than an airplane seat. Although elsewhere referred to as 'cartoons,' they really aren't. They're like fine-art museum paintings that come to life against the lush strains of Gershwin's 'Rhapsody in Blue.' How often have you seen a TV commercial that you'd like to hang on the wall of your living room?

Shrek's Space Shot
Marketer: Sierra Mist
Brand: Sierra Mist
Title: "Attitude"
Agency: BBDO Worldwide, New York
Shrek, who now appears in more commercials than an ogre's swamp has tangled roots, is hawking Sierra Mist in this one. But at least it's less disgusting than the Dial Soap spot about ogre ear wax.

Stainmaster Insect
Marketer: Stainmaster
Brand: Stainmaster Carpets
Title: "Bee"
Agency: BBDO New York
A dumb but effective spot. A bee flies in the window to be swatted to the floor by our homeowner. But then the tables turn as the tiny insect thrashes and pummels the shocked human, ultimately heaving him down the length of a coffee table loaded with drinks and heaping plates of food. But that spill scene is the only thing that matters in this message about carpets that resist food stains.

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