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SON OF THE RETURN OF THE BIG FACEOFF RIDES AGAIN A TRIO OF ARTISTICALLY-INCLINED AGENCY FELLAS GO SENTENCE SURFING TO FIND SOME TYPE-DRIVEN SPOTS THAT ARE WORTH REREADING-AND A COUPLE OTHERS THEY'D JUST RATHER PARSE ON

Published on .

Michael Rylander,

VP-Associate Creative Director

Hal Riney & Partners, San Francisco

Client: American Express

Agency: Ogilvy & Mather/New YorkAbout as good as it gets. These titles are all spot on. Beautifully executed and never boring, the work stands up to repeated viewing. I love the lack of any "format," and how each spot's graphics tie in with the personality of the cardmember.

The entire advertising industry would do well to call in this reel, and use the Pause button often.

Client: IBM Agency: Wells Rich Greene BDDP, New YorkOnce again, big agency, big client, but typographic genius this is not. Instead, we have a tired, pathetic rip-off of W&K's stylish (albeit conceptless) Subaru launch. I guess we're supposed to be so smitten with the type that we overlook the total lack of idea. For shame.

Jelly Helm

Art Director

Wieden & Kennedy, Portland

Client: Nike

Agency: Simons Palmer Denton Clemmow & Johnson, London

This British Nike spot, called "Kick It," features type that is fresh, appropriate and well-crafted. The type is an integral part of the concept; it doesn't look like something that was done in post by a turd-polishing art director who said, "Why don't we do something funky with the type?"

Besides the type, the commercial is great. You should see it on a reel. Storyboard frames don't do it justice.

Client: Reebok Foundation

Agency: Chiat/Day/N.Y.In a commercial for such an admirable and worthwhile cause, it's hard to pick apart the type. But I'm willing to try. There's too much type, it's awkwardly paced and it's clumsy-looking. It dilutes the message and contributes to the heavy-handed feel of the commercial. To quote Beavis and Butt-head, "If I wanted to read, I'd go to school." But this spot won One Show Gold, so maybe I'm all wet.

Kent Hunter

Executive Design Director

Frankfurt Balkind, N.Y.

Client: Oxford Health Plan

Agency: Deutsch Inc.,New YorkThese spots really grabbed my attention with their slow-mo photo style and "Human Beings 101" copy, but it's the typography that really makes me hold on for the ride. It's smart, subtle and sophisticated, especially the dimensional quality of the letterforms and the way the type dissolves on top of the ghosted-back images.

The type's a little large, perhaps, but the look establishes a series and insidiously stays in my head.

Client: Tobacco Free

Agency: Heater Easdon, BostonLeave it to the Brits (at London's Why Not Associates) to give us some terribly tasteful type for anti-smoking PSAs. If they can sell cigarettes without any copy, seems they can convince us to stop by animating it. In my favorite of the series, '90s mantras-"Feel less nervous"; "Look more beautiful"; "Breathe easier"-appear in an elegant mix of formal script and back to basics Helvetica. A beautiful woman comes into focus and gently but literally blows the type away. No VO, thank you, to disturb the new age soundtrack.

Nothing earth shattering here, but the typography graphically and effectively communicates the simple message. We don't need a frying pan over the head to get the point.

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