Been idly looking out the window at work lately, wondering what you're doing for a living, and why? The Martin Agency and CareerBuilder.com, a recruitment site, have a few words of advice: "Don't jump." That's what the tops of buses in New York City read. Funny, considering that the TV, radio, print, banner ads, and transit make you question your entire career with soul-searching inquiries such as, "Do you need coffee to go to work?" and " In ten years you will be a . . ." The assertion that, "Although it hasn't been proven, fluorescent lighting is bad for the soul," doesn't help much either. If that wasn't enough, the TV work features scenes of bored cubicle people contemplating a paper clip for 30 seconds with the tagline, "When is your future?" Fortunately, the bus drove by -- it was getting really crowded on the ledge.
Client: CareerBuilder.com Agency: Martin/Richmond CDS: Mike Hughes & Joe Alexander ADS: Aurica Green & Claiborne Riley CWS:Joe Alexander & Valerie Foley Directors: Richard Carroll & Dominic Bridges, Public Works Producers: Julie Basham-Smith, Chris Mumford, Virginia Bertholet & Linda Locks Music: Machine Head Photography: Stock/Jim Erickson, Stock/TSW & Stock/Photonica
Another spot, another hamster. This time it's one of a pair of spots that marks the first national TV work from Merkley Newman Harty for BMW motorcycles. In the perfectly-named "Hamster," our furry friend bangs around an office cube in his plastic exercise ball (inset photo) -- in sharp contrast to a happy guy on a bike. In the sadly hamsterless "Traffic/Free," the camera focuses on hot, sweaty people stuck in formidable Manhattan traffic as they enviously watch a motorcyclist zoom past (above). The spots are beautifully shot and there's no VO to distract from the images. Each commerical ends simply with the title "Ride," followed by a pause, then "Motorcycles." Then the BMW logo, of course.
Client: BMW Agency: Merkley Newman Harty/New York CDS: Andy Hirsch, Randy Saitta & Marty Orzio AD: Phil Toledano CW: Jeff Vinick Director: Erick Ifergan, Serial Dreamer Producer: Dominic Ferro Editor: Adam Schwartz, Lost Planet Music: Ray Foote, Big Foote Productions
Holier than thou
Maybe it's just the heathen in us, but we love the borderline blasphemy of taking passages from the Bible and applying them to these print ads for the Saint Mary College Soccer team. This one reads, " `Gird up now thy loins like a man; for I will demand of thee.' -- Job 38:3." Another ad, which shows a St. Mary man sliding in to get the ball says, " `The Lord shall smite thee in the knees, and in the legs, with a sore botch that cannot be healed.' Deuteronomy 28:35." The tagline says it all: "If God is for us, who can be against us?" Hmmm, we don't know . . . Satan?
Client: Saint Mary College Soccer Agency: Sullivan Higdon & Sink, Wichita ACM/CW: John January AD: Paul Diamond CW: Tug McTighe Photographer: Ron Berg
Being cute is difficult in the normally edgy snowboarding market, but four print pieces for Boeri helmets from Mullen manage to be cute and cool. The product benefit is clearly visible -- keeping one's head -- but it's conveyed in a non-preachy manner. Another ad shows four dandelions -- three with the helmets on and one that's just a bare stem; cracked peanuts and bowling pins also get the helmet treatment. Says copywriter Stephen Mietelski, "We had no expectations, but they just took off. Shops are calling and asking for posters."
Client: Boeri Agency: Mullen, Wenham, MA CDS: Edward Boches & Greg Bokor AD: Mary Rich CW: Stephen Mietelski Photographer: Craig Orsinni Illustrator: Mark Rossiero
Adidas' new line
Almost as ubiquitous as Nike's swoosh, Adidas's stripes are adorning the sides of just about every gym rat worth their weight in sweat. These striking print pieces from Seattle's WongDoody put those stripes to work as more than just a fashion statement. It's some bad-ass branding!
Client: Adidas Agency: WongDoody/Seattle CD: Tracy Wong AD: Pam Fujimoto CW: Jacket McCullough Photographer: Steve Bonini
DDB/New York shows just how necessary the bean is to the brew in five funny Colombian coffee commercials. In "Connoisseur," the waiter pours a small amount o' joe in a delicate cup. The patron sniffs, swirls and sips. He nods his approval and the waiter shows the can, 100 percent Colombian. In another spot, a guy sits in a coffee shop with his cup. He takes a sip, frowns and adds some sugar. This continues until finally he's pouring in the whole damn sugar dispenser. The tagline reminds us, "If you want your coffee to taste better, start with better-tasting coffee."
Client: National Federation of Coffee Growers of Colombia Agency: DDB Worldwide Marketing, New York CD/CW: Lora Nelson Director: J.C.Manwald, Antenna Media/Partners Producers: Lora Nelson, DDB; Bill Perna, Antenna & Nancy Shames, Crew Cuts Editor: Gary Hernandez, Crew Cuts Post: Nice Shoes Music: Lyle Greenfield, Bang Music Sound Design: Marshall Grupp Audio Post: Buzz
The cup of strife
Since the only spectator sport duller than golf has to be sailing, Ground Zero faced a challenge in getting the average beer-swilling ESPN viewer to sit back and watch a bunch of rich guys tug on ropes. But thanks to some super-cheesy effects starring an angry Poseidon, the Sirens and a giant crab (which looks like an outtake from a Red Lobster commercial), the race for the America's Cup makes the Titanic seem like a smooth sail. In fact, the spots are so cute that we're willing to overlook the fact that, according to mythology, the Sirens have the bodies of birds, not supermodels.
Client: ESPN Agency: Ground Zero, Marina Del Rey CDS: Kirk Souder & Court Crandall AD: Paul Foulkes CW: Tyler Hampton Director: Roman Coppola, Directors Bureau Producer: Heidi Hawkings Editor: Jim Rhodes, Bedlam & George Fitz, Colorado Music: APM
What the duck?
The Creativity award for Best Use of a Talking Duck in an Insurance Spot goes, wings down, to The Kaplan Thaler Group for the American Family Life Assurance Company, better known as AFLAC. The setup: Two guys sit on a bench by a lake when someone goes flying off his bike. Barely registering any surprise at the accident, one guy says, "Wow, when I got hurt and missed work, I thought I had supplemental assurance." The other asks what that is and a duck wanders over to answer "AFLAC." They ignore him. Unfortunately, the guy still can't come up with the name, so the duck squawks it out a few more times and even kicks a giant bread crumb at the fellows to get their attention, all to no avail. He should've flipped them the bird.
Client: AFLAC Agency: The Kaplan Thaler Group, New York CD: Linda Kaplan Thaler CD/AD: Eric David CD/CW: Tom Amico Director: Tom Routson, Tool Producer: Andrea Davis Editor: Jerry Fried, Red Car
Bloody good idea
We want a transfusion from him, the blood-alcohol level must be kickin'! The other two happy campers in this campaign are a drill sergeant petting a pussycat and a cafeteria lady who's gone all out -- she's serving a feast that, in addition to the milk and Jell-O, includes a whole lobster. The point is, "Giving blood brings out the good in everybody." Or just a really good head rush.
Client: Memorial Blood Centers of Minnesota Agency: Carmichael Lynch, Minneapolis GCD: Jennifer Johnson AD: Dave Damman CW: Mike Roe Photographer: Shawn Michienzi
How does one reconcile the Southern Gentleman and Good Ole Boy aspects of the North Carolina Male? Say, for example, your wife or girlfriend has really bad cramps and needs you to run out to the drugstore and pick up some tampons. McKinney & Silver and Sutton's drugstores have come up with a perfect solution. Take your copy of the University of North Carolina's Daily Tar Heel and cut out the Sutton's disguise boxes. The manly choices include bullets, cigarettes and nails. If the concept itself isn't funny enough, the body copy gives great advice to guys. For instance, the nail box warns, "Always hammer the flat end of the nail, nails won't work the other way."
Client: Sutton's Drug Store Agency: McKinney & Silver, Raleigh CD: David Baldwin AD: Dino Valentini CW: Kim Nguyen Print Production: Clint Ackerman
Built voyeur tough
Car commercials generally avoid the spooky approach, but not this new type-driven :30 from J. Walter Thompson for the 2000 Ford Taurus. The spot, titled "Scary Movie Preview," opens with the words "I'm watching you," floating on a vaguely sinister blue-black background. The next few lines get even more personal including: "I know all about you"; "I know how long your legs are"; and ending with the goose bump-inducing, "I will protect you." Just when you think Maximum Overdrive II is about the hit the theaters, the visual changes to the car racing on a road and a voiceover announcing the car's "personal safety system."
Client: Ford Agency: J. Walter Thompson/Detroit AD: Don McCormack CW: Amy Pais Director: Paul Matthaeus, Digital Kitchen Producer: Eric MacMichael Editor: Eric Anderson, Digital Kitchen Music: Elias Associates
Little Amy is working on her Dear Santa letter, on which she's drawn a big teddy bear. Mom and Dad look on affectionately, the soft music and warm lighting perfectly setting the Christmas tone. Later, in a toy store, Mom eyes an enormous bear, turning over the price tag and shaking her head. It's too much money. Dad looks on ruefully. Cut to Christmas morning. Mom leads her little girl down to the tree, and there's Daddy in front of a huge gift marked, "To Amy. Love, Santa." Mom's and Amy's eyes open wide as Dad rips back the paper to reveal -- a huge stereo system. Amy cries and has to be comforted by Mom; Dad stares lovingly at his new toy. The VO: "Passionate about electronics? So are we. Good Guys. It doesn't get any gooder." We'll even overlook the serious breach of grammar and the companion spot in which a guy has 95 stereo systems in his bathroom.
Client: Good Guys Agency: Citron Haligman Bedecarre, San Francisco CDS: Matt Haligman & Kirk Citron AD: Kevin Raich CW: Dave Khoury Director: Joe Public, Headquarters Producer: Julian Katz Editor: Bob Spector, Bob & Sheila's Edit World Music: Ear to Ear & Asche & Spencer
Leagas Delaney and the twisted Swedes of Traktor team up for CNET to bring us the funny, weird and oddly disturbing "Yellow Room" campaign. In the most deliberately simplistic fashion, the spots show that CNET can guide users to products they're looking for on the Web. The whole concept is represented by silent, unglamorous people in yellow pants and white shirts with identifying words. In one spot, a man in a shirt marked "You" is taken in hand by a "CNET"-shirted man, who leads him over to a plant in the corner of the nearly empty yellow room. The CNET guy points and the man hiding behind the plant stands up, revealing himself to be "The best price."
Client: CNET Agency: Leagas Delaney, San Francisco CDS: Harry Cocciolo & Sean Ehringer ACD/AD: Roger Camp CW: Matt Elhardt Producer: Lisa Gatto Director: Traktor Editor: Jim Hutchins, Nomad Music: Asche & Spencer and Stock
Robaire & Hogshead go just above and below the belt with these print ads for fitness Website Phys.com. One headline reads, "At some point, red lipstick and high heels have to come off. Unlike a washboard stomach." We went to the site, thinking we could order one of those. Apparently you need to exercise and eat right. Bummer. We still like the campaign, though. Gives new meaning to the term "Body Copy" eh?
Client: Phys.com Agency: Robaire and Hogshead, Venice, Calif. CD/AD: Jean Robaire CD/CW: Sally Hogshead Photographer: Michael Ruppert
Get your Mynd out of the gutter
If what you see here is an exploding butterfly or four ants having an orgy, see a therapist. This stylish blotch is not an excerpt from a Rorschach test, but Duffy Design's new logo for the recently rechristened Mynd. Mynd, formerly known as Policy Management Systems Corporation, creates and maintains databases for insurance companies. In addition to coming up with the name change and fathering the new logo, Duffy redesigned all the internal and external marketing materials.
Client: Mynd Agency: Duffy Design and Interactive/New York Design Director: Neil Powell Senior Designer: Alan Leusink Designer: Brain Murphy CW: Jamie Kwong Photographer: Roe Ethridge Art Buyer: Karen Sarfaty Production: Louise Raicht
OK, but what's a whisk?
Three print ads for KitchenLink.com are targeted at the serious cooking enthusiast. This piece is obvioulsy aimed at people born with a wooden spoon in their mouth. Another ad features a cake in the shape of a flashlight, which reads, "Happy National Flashlight Week." The copy asks, "Looking for an excuse to cook? Just check our message boards. You're sure to find an idea that whisks your batter."
Client: KitchenLink.com Agency: Hey, You, New York CD/AD/CW: Jonathan Sunshine Photographer: Jim Galante Retoucher: Alan Radom