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Taking a Shine to This?
Lately, all the ads we've put up for review have been more or less washed in vitriol and hung out to dry. How about Rain-X? Is this another case of "Pass the clothes pins," people? Rate the ad on a six-degree taste scale of excellence on the Sweet Meter, with 5 being the top score: 5 Very Sweet, 4 Sweet, 3 Semi-Dry, 2 Dry, 1 Extra Dry, 0 Sour. And feel free to offer your comments on the photography, the art direction, the copy, the concept, the typography, whatever. Click here to play.

Bottoms Down
Last week's Rate the Ad. We've always been fans of the utterly minimalist Ketel One campaign. In fact, we showcased it a while back in this newsletter. But that's just us. You people, for the most part, are not drinking to that — certainly not with this particular execution, which was, frankly, executed. Veterans of this newsletter may recall last summer's 1800 Tequila Debacle, as we like to call it — an ad, featuring a female flasher, that went an appalling 12/88 on the Sweet Meter's Good/Bad ratio, comparing the top half of the meter to the bottom half, with 55% of pollees giving it the goose egg. Ketel One is not too far off that pace, going 22/78 with a 48% Sour. There was a deluge of snarky "Dear Ketel One ..." comments, and, thanks to the latest George Lucas Muppets-in-space fest, more than a few references to "Yoda-speak." There were also a surprising number of entrants who've never heard of this brand of vodka and have never seen an ad for it. Some of you needs must get out more. Anyway, here are the results.

5 Very Sweet 5%
4 Sweet 8%
3 Semi-Dry 9%
2 Dry 15%
1 Extra Dry 15%
0 Sour 48%

And here are some of our fave responses.

0 You are not excused.

0 I love white space. Its very existence will stop me in my tracks and get my attention, but I don't get the payoff here.

0 Is this a bad translation of a bad German headline?

0 This campaign was cool at first, but now it's just getting old.

4 This ad stands out in a sea of clutter. I notice it every time I flip through a magazine. I won't buy the product, but they've at least gotten my attention.

2 Great stopping power, but it only appeals to Ketel One fans.

5 If this ad actually has an impact on sales, and I hope it does, we are looking at the advent of a new Golden Age in advertising. Brunhilde, meet shibui.

0 Shouldn't there be a "Write responsibly" tagline at the bottom?

5 I think I'll stop over at my freezer right now and pour me a shot.

1 Needs mustard.

3 I thought outsourcing copy to Transylvania was just a rumor! But I did visit the website out of curiosity.

4 Gotta give credit to a client who can deal with no product shot and no giant logo.

0 I hate these ads. When I see one in a magazine, I simply turn the page and pretend it doesn't exist.

0 Put some orange cones around this ad, it's obviously still under construction.

2 They have some great lines in this campaign, and this isn't one of them.

1 If the only thing you've got in your ad is copy, it'd better be understandable.

2 Memorable, but too clever for its own good.

1 I'm not a Ketel One drinker, and this ad doesn't make me want to be one.

4 I get it: your needs are interrupting your read. But that's just what needs do!

4 I like this campaign. The ads are visually arresting, and I always stop to read the lines, which are usually quite good. A good example of cool art direction masquerading as no art direction. And I applaud the brazen lack of logofication.

1 I'm all for white space and I love clever copy, but this just sails right over my head. Needs help.

3 While I like the concept, the wording just doesn't fly.

5 Infuriating, and I love it.