Guest Review

Published on .

Mark Tutssel

Deputy Chief Creative Officer

Leo Burnett USA, Chicago

Hal Curtis

Creative Director

Wieden & Kennedy/Portland

1. PANASONIC "Convenience Store"

A rambunctious dwarf is used to highlight the small size of the new Panasonic "e-wear" camera in this slapstick spot, directed by Kevin Smith of Jay and Silent Bob fame. In it, a man loaded with snacks from a convenience store is surprised off his feet in the parking lot by a car full of kids honking their horn. Suddenly, a dwarf bursts from a newspaper box screaming "Eeeee!" making everyone scream. "That was good," says the dwarf. "Too good to miss. Let's try that again." Blowing an airhorn, the man once again loses control of his packages. Tagline: "Have a little fun."

Client: Panasonic Agency: Grey/N.Y. ECD: Robert Skollar CD: Ed Hannibal ADs: Doug Fallon, Glen Hall CWs: Brian Fallon, Mike Ryniec Agency Producer: Adam Seely Director: Kevin Smith/The Industry

TUTSSEL: This commercial, I admit, grabs your attention. A midget bursting out of a newspaper dispenser yelling "Eeeeeee!" is certainly impactful, but it makes the mistake of not rewarding me for watching it. I'm left totally confused. There's an idea in, "Something happens, you record it," but this is not included in the execution. This category has produced some outstanding advertising, Nikon and Olympus being two examples. But based on this viewing, Panasonic has a long way to go. 1 star

CURTIS: It's been said that advertising should always spring from the product. And there's certainly a lot of springing going on in this spot. The product is a Panasonic camcorder. It's really small. The spot features a dwarf. Who is also really small. We see him explode out of a newspaper dispenser. You'd have to be small to do that. The dwarf has a tiny goatee and looks like a diminutive Eric Gagne (relief pitcher for the L.A. Dodgers). Who happens to be from Canada. It's cold in Canada. Which might explain the dwarf coming out of the Igloo cooler at the end of the spot. I admit the airhorn threw me. But maybe the team was thinking that even though the sound is really big, it could still fit in your pocket. But that's just a guess. 1 star

3. SEALY "Car"

To demonstrate the idea that "If Sealy made cars, you'd fall asleep at the wheel," a man stares at a car in a showroom. The salesman approaches and urges the man to get behind the wheel. "It's a Sealy," says the salesman. "What a car." The man promptly pitches forward, fast asleep against the steering wheel. VO: "This is why we don't make cars."

Client: Sealy Agency: Mullen ECD: Denzil Strickland CCO: Edward Boches ACD: Karie Seykora AD: Bill Starkey CW: Rich Parubrub Director: Rob Pritts/Backyard Productions

TUTSSEL: Last year's Lion winners included a wonderful spot for Sealy from Mexico. "Boy" opens on a split screen featuring two identical bedrooms. On one side, a little boy is bouncing energetically on a mattress. Suddenly, he jumps from one bed across the split screen to the other, a Sealy. He falls fast asleep on impact. That was a simple product demo, and leaves a really strong message that Sealy is "made for sleep." This spot, based on the sale of a car, sadly takes the idea and stretches it to ridiculous lengths. You only have license to play with a campaign idea once it is firmly established and clearly understood. This is not. For the idea to work, you need the product - a bed that more people sleep on than any other (a great fact, lost in the voiceover) - to play an integral part in the storyline. 1 star

CURTIS: People suddenly falling asleep upon hearing the word "Sealy" is a simple and strong idea. It conjures up many opportunities for great filmmaking. This particular spot, however, feels like a small introduction to the idea - almost like a print ad on film. The spot's nicely done, it's just that it's kind of boring. But then maybe that's perfect for a mattress manufacturer whose corporate mission is to help us all sleep better. 2 stars

2. MOLSON "Peter"

A pretty blonde, who doesn't look or sound anything like an airhead, is in a bar speaking directly to the camera, explaining why she's hooking up with "Peter" tonight. "Sure, he keeps forgetting my name," she says of the oblivious guy next to her, "and has been talking to my chest all night. But because he drinks Molson, that means he's experienced and worldly. Just the kind of guy that can really rock my world." Tag: "Let your Molson do the talking."

Client: Molson Agency: Crispin, Porter + Bogusky/Miami CD: Alex Bogusky ACD: Bill Wright AD: Paul Keister CW: Bob Cianfrone Agency Producer: Rupert Samuel Director: Kuntz & Maguire/MJZ

TUTSSEL: This spot is all about the "effect" Molson has on women. It's simple, single-minded and well-cast. The performance is good and the dialogue shows some level of wit and charm. I particularly like the simplicity of the one-shot camera move, which drew me into the dialogue. The line, "He's been talking to my chest all night," should raise a few titters with the guys in the bars. It's a smart idea and should cut through the clutter on television. But having said that, I find it reminiscent of the brilliant BBH spot "Ideal Woman," for Lynx. 3 stars

CURTIS: I decided to focus-group this one; I randomly chose a few people from the agency, had lunch brought in and played the spot. Results? Very funny. Well-written. Well-directed. One person in the group felt the spot made women look stupid and gave the communication a "nasty aftertaste - just like the beer." I guess we'll soon see if it's strong enough to stop a second round. I hope not. I think the spot is terrific. 4 stars

4. KIA "May Sales Event - Beautiful"

In honor of Kia's "All-Model Sales Event," a showroom full of leggy women are slithering in and out of the vehicles, aided by two giddy salesmen. "So whaddya think?" the salesman asks one of the women. "Think?" she replies. "Should we tell them that all-model means all car models?" one man asks the other. "Uh-uh," is the reply. The super announces Kia's cash-back incentives.

Client: Kia Agency: David & Goliath CCO: David Angelo CD: Nigel Williams AD: Will Chau CW: Kim Genkinger Agency Producers: Anne Kurtzman, Mary Ellen Duggan, John Sideris Director: Tom DeCerchio/Incubator Films

TUTSSEL: Getting $2,000 cash back on all of Kia's new models is a tight brief. But it does have something to say, and unfortunately that fact is buried in this commercial. You are left remembering the human models and not the car models. The model's answer "Think?" is quite funny, but I'm left remembering that and not the deal. Also, using fashion models in a car commercial is so cliched. Besides, would Linda Evangelista get out of bed for $2,000? 1 star

CURTIS: The models/models construct is amusing. We all know that doing a dealer-driven, sell-sell-sell car ad is one tough assignment. So I applaud the spot for at least making something potentially horrible into something to smile about. 2stars

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