The Work

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Flights of Fancy

Mullen/LHC elevates the airline category to indie film status in a new campaign for Midway Airlines, replete with self-conscious camera-work and languid, high-artsy pacing. The spots emphasize the usual on-time departures, non-stop service and young fleets, but in a most uncommon fashion. One :30 is a tactile depiction of a lazy afternoon in a retirement community. A woman gently moves her hips to music; ice tea sends beads of sweat dripping down a glass. A plane passes and a man glances up. "Midway?" his friend asks. "Yup." He sets his watch and returns to his checker game, utterly content. In another spot, two mothers exchange muted conversation on an anonymous sidewalk. A little girl points to the sky: "Baby baby!" she cries. "Oh, look," her mother says. "She sees another baby."

Client: Midway Airlines Agency: Mullen/LHC, Winston-Salem, N.C. EVP/Chief Creative Officer: Denzil Strickland ADs: Keith Borshak/Rick Kourchenko Producer: Keith Rose Director: Noam Murro Production Company: Biscuit Filmworks

Just Tooling

An elegant print campaign for a new Canadian shelter magazine that will appear in the Toronto Globe & Mail presents pleasantly repurposed home-improvement aids: a hammer to open a beer bottle; a paint can full of ice; a paint tray loaded with drinks, held by a tuxedoed arm. We'd like a screwdriver, please.

Client: Canadian Home Planning Magazine Agency: Grey/Toronto AD: Raul Garcia CW: Craig Burt Photographer: Kristin Sjaarda

Give it a Bronze

Finally- truth in advertising. Over margaritas in downtown Dallas, the boys of Signal decided on a direct approach to promote a tanning salon in the Lone Star State. This billboard, located on a main drag above a Christian bookstore, is attracting plenty of water cooler-style attention, but so far no protests. Not so for the 'burbs. Outside the city the headline was diluted to the considerably tamer "Cheaper than breast augmentation."

Client: Planet Tan Agency: Signal CD/AD: Vincent LoPresti CW: Scott Shalles

Dry Idea

What if the well really runs dry? A campaign for the Denver Department of Water & Power tackles that very question in an inspired effort to convince residents to conserve water. The campaign presents three worst-case scenarios. In one spot, a man spits bitterly on his grass, a hose sprawled impotently at his feet. In another, a man licks himself in the shower like a big, dirty cat; the third features a racer grabbing a beaker of lab-bound urine from a bike messenger's hand. It's not wet, but it's wild.

Client: Denver Dept. of Water and Power Agency: Sukle Advertising CD/Producer: Mike Sukle AD: Norm Shearer CW: Jim Glynn Production Company: M-80 Films Director: Todd Factor Executive Producer: Gregg Stern/Mathew McManus Producer: Steve Strachen Editor: Jed Factor

STANDUP COMEDY

In a pithy branding campaign for the U.S. Olympics, Goodby highlights athletic dedication by replacing the contestants with cardboard cutouts at various social and everyday interactions. Though hardly a fresh idea, it's executed with brio. At the dentist, a cardboard cutout of snowboarder Trisha Burns is scraped and squirted by an oblivious doc. "Hey, Trisha," he says before suctioning her one-dimensional mouth. "Why was eight afraid of seven? Because seven ate nine!" A cutout of skier Joe Pack stands in at a first-time meeting with his girlfriend's parents. "Mess with my daughter," the father says surreptitiously, "and I'll see you burned."

Client: U.S. Olympic Committee Agency: Goodby, Silverstein & Partners Agency Producer: Cindy Fluit Executive Producers: Jon Kamen/Frank Scherma/Robert Fernandez Director: Frank Todaro Production Company: Radical Media

Forward thinking

"This is my back," one boy says repeatedly to another in scene after scene. "It's all you're gonna see. " It's an old joke, but we'll forgive the teller: a mentally-retarded boy who is beating the joke to death in an unusually poignant spot for the Special Olympics. Sponsored by Cingular and created by BBDO South/Atlanta, the show of humanity had us running for the Kleenex.

Client: Cingular Agency: BBDO South/Atlanta Agency producer: Danica Walker AD/CW: Bill Pauls/Rich Wakefield Production Company: Moxie Pictures Postproduction Filmcore/S.F. Editor: Doug Walker

ROAD RAGE, RECONFIGURED

This spot for the Toyota Corolla is such rollicking fun we'll forgive the Sopranos-style stereotypes. Filmed in Rome, the spot is a neck-breaking trip through heavy traffic, punctuated by high-decibel Italian. The twist is the unexpected subtitles, which stress the car's attributes and spoof the usual road-raging epithets. "My car has standard airbags!" yells a Corolla owner at a driver who has cut him off. "Nice brakes!" screams a traffic cop during a near-death encounter. "My fingers are stuck together!" yells a meaty man, pinching his digits.

Client: Toyota Corolla Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi/L.A. Production Company: Headquarters Director: Joe Public Executive Producers: Tom Mooney/Alex Blum Editor: David Brixton, The White House Agency Producers: Damon Webster/Richard Bendetti/Anna Graves CDs: Steve Rabosky/Miles Turpin/Steve Landrum CW: Jeff Nicosia

ANIMAL LOVE

Impersonating obscure animals in heat always makes for good advertising, but what sets these two new British Lynx deodorant spots apart from the pack is their disarming combination of public sex and lunacy. In one spot, a woman is slapped in the face by a long, wet fish, which is hanging from the mouth of her suitor. (A move apparently common among black-tipped seagulls). The other :30 examines the mating rituals of the horned turtle, a creature blessed with extraordinary toenails, which he "rakes across the female's snout," a VO informs us. The female in this case is a sexy young thing wearing a Catholic school uniform, and this behavior is, of course, expressly forbidden.

Client: Lever Faberge's Lynx Agency: Bartle Bogle Hegarty/London CD: Rosie Arnold AD/CW: Adam & Saunby Agency Producer: Mighty Method Director: Danny Kleinmann Production Company: Specter

LIGHT BEER UBER ALLES

A new Beck's Light campaign portrays Germans as finally coming around to the American way of doing things. This means a rendition of "Wild Thing" by a band in Lederhosen; a stein-slinging beer frau with a flower-power tattoo on her belly; a Sound of Music-type bringing the hills alive with a Frisbee; and of course, drinking (ach!) light beer.

Client: Beck's Light Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi/New York Chief Creative Officer: Tod Seisser CDs: Mariano Favetto/Mark Cicciatore AD: John Sullivan CW: Glen Levy Agency Producer: Dean Shoukas Production Company: Radical Media Director: Tarsem Editor: Antoine Mills, Jump Edit/Russell Icke, The Whitehouse, London Music: Amber Music ("Frisbee"); Sacred Noise ("Accordion," "Technicians")

THE HUNGER ARTIST

This four-part campaign to raise awareness for child hunger is a pet project of Joe Pytka's, and he seeks to tell the subjects' stories (gathered by Bartle Bogle Hegarty creatives from soup kitchens and shelters) in an emotional way without going overboard. Indeed, the four :30s are subtle yet disturbing - intimate in an American Beauty sort of way. In one spot, a nondescript woman is seen trolling fast-food joints, stuffing ketchup into her coat. This becomes a soup dinner for her two daughters, who scrape the bowl. Another shows a stick-thin girl gleefully bounding up the stairs of a nice-looking pad, only to stoop down and drink the milk that's been left out for a cat.

Client: Ad Council of America/America's Second Harvest Agency: Bartle Bogle Hegarty/NY CD: Thomas Hayo CW: Thomas Hayo/Peter Kain AD: Thomas Hayo/Gianfranco Arena Director: Joe Pytka Executive Producer: Cathy Rhodes Agency Producer: Mary Cheney

HANG LOOSE

This clever spot for a Southern California gym takes full-court advantage of the awkward intimacy of pickup basketball. It opens with three men arguing off- court over which of them will cover another player. Cut to the object of the dispute: a wiry man wearing high-tops, glasses, a sweatband - and nothing else. The players are repeatedly forced against his naked frame; one even gets hit in the face by his scrambled privates as he reaches for a slam dunk.

Client: Yard Fitness Agency: JC Advertising Director: Kevin Smith Prodution Company: Backyard Productions CD/AD/CW: Josh Caplan Producers: Blair Stribley/Kris Mathur/Peter Keenan Editor: TBA/The Finish Line Music: Loren Silver/Susie Harshman

THE ITCH GIRL

"You scratch my back, I'll scratch yours." That's the guiding philosophy at the Hives Alive Poison Ivy Farm in Maryland - a farm for "people who love to scratch." It's also the site of a tickling mockumentary for the state's Scratch-Off lottery games. Our tour-guide is the farm's fuzzy-eyed founder, Carol. She introduces the fellow scratchers, including a dwarf, a soothsayer and a group of cacophonic hippies. "In the '60s we experimented," says Carol, rubbing herself with vines. "It all started with the smooth sumac . . ." Should we tell her to lay off the weed?

Client: Maryland State Lottery Agency: Eisner Communications CD: Stephen Etzine Director: Jim Tozzi Production Company: M-80 AD: Mark Rosica CW: Craig Strydom

BRAIN DRAIN

Humans, on average, use less than 10 percent of their brainpower at any given time. In this spirit, a new spot urges Hartford Courant readers to "make room" for the paper's broadening content. Filmed in an auditorium - under the bright, dappled light of dream space - a man stands behind a lectern, purging unnecessary memories from a reader's subconscious. "High school locker combo?" he calls, and three kids wearing numbered T-shirts shuffle out. "That girl from Spring Break?" A woman stands, snapping her gum. "You've been replaced by expanded sports." Now that's progress.

Client: Hartford Courant Agency: Mintz & Hoke CD: Chris Knopf ACD/AD: Su Strawderman ACD/CW: David Banta Production Company: Picture Park/Boston Director: Jon Bekemier

SUCKER PUNCH

These tangy ads for bittersweet candy will bunch up your face even if you come nowhere near the stuff. The ads' wry musings - "One moment it's sweet. One moment it's sour. One minute you love it. The next? Well, that's what therapy's for" - may lose a few in the under-15 set, but the burp jokes are sure to reach a wide audience. At the same time, lines like "Better tasting than glue and almost as good for you," or "It's like donating your body to science - while you're still alive," have a grim maturity about them that should appeal to even the denture set.

Client: American Licorice Co., Sour Punch Candy Agency: Austin Kelley Advertising CD:Jim Spruell AD: David Galligos CW: John Spalsing/Chris Dutton Illustrator: John Bills

SUCKER PUNCH

These tangy ads for bittersweet candy will bunch up your face even if you come nowhere near the stuff. The ads' wry musings - "One moment it's sweet. One moment it's sour. One minute you love it. The next? Well, that's what therapy's for" - may lose a few in the under-15 set, but the burp jokes are sure to reach a wide audience. At the same time, lines like "Better tasting than glue and almost as good for you," or "It's like donating your body to science - while you're still alive," have a grim maturity about them that should appeal to even the denture set.

Client: American Licorice Co., Sour Punch Candy Agency: Austin Kelley Advertising CD:Jim Spruell AD: David Galligos CW: John Spalsing/Chris Dutton Illustrator: John Bills

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