Commercial Closet Announces Award Nominees

Wrigley, Orbitz.com, American Airlines Among Those Nominated

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The Commercial Closet Association is releasing its nominees for this year's Commercial Closet Images in Advertising Awards, which will be held July 28. I went to the show a couple of years ago and had a blast -- it was a) short and b) extremely irreverent (insult comics are great for taking the deadening self-importance out of a room full of creatives and marketers).

Anyway, the nominees this year for outstanding commercial in the general market are: Wrigley's Eclipse, Orbitz.com, Levi's, Chemistry.com and Dolce & Gabbana. You can check out these and all of the nominees in other categories at the Commercial Closet website. (Note to marketers: Could you please put all of your spots on YouTube? Thank you.)

My own unsolicited take on some of the spots? Some of them don't strike me as all that "gay" (which may be progress in itself). The Dolce & Gabbana work could be about narcissism as much as anything else. The models -- as most fashion models are -- are on the freakish side and end up making out with what appear to be same-sex carbon copies of themselves. The spot for Wrigley's Eclipse Fusion gum shows a woman kissing a guy before moving onto a woman -- which is when the spot stops. In other words, the kiss is insinuated. Not only that, but I'm pretty sure cute girl-on-girl action is rather mainstream these days -- certainly by the sort of dude who'd love nothing more than to see his girlfriend take the first steps toward a threesome. Hell, one of the reasons "Battlestar Galactica" does so well is the prospect of some hot Cylon-on-Cylon action (that's sadly never materialized).

But here's one from Chemistry.com's "Rejected" series, created by Hanft Raboy & Partners, that doesn't hide behind pretty people or the sort of sex that might turn on the Maxim crowd. I'm a big fan.



Levi's has some solid work. And the spot for Orbitz.com from Mullen is just hilarious. (There's a straight version of this ad as well, which nicely shows that commitment phobia isn't a straight/gay thing.)

And I really dig a couple of spots from American Airlines nominated in the LGBT market category. I could have sworn I saw the American Airlines spots (Right Person and Good Face Licking) for its Rainbow service repurposed without the Rainbow tag for the general market. That isn't exactly surprising as Commercial Closet's own theme-o-meter (hey, it's what I'm calling it) pegged both spots as "Gay Vague."

Other interesting tidbits. R&R Partners, Las Vegas, was the agency that received the most nominations for its "Only Vegas" print ads and its "His and His" spot for Harrah's Paris Las Vegas. Interestingly enough, R&R Partners does pro bono work for Catholic Charities. And the automotive industry was the sector with the most nominations. Go figure.

And go check out the other nominees.

My biggest disappointment is that Commercial Closet has retired the Clean Up Your Act category, in which it slapped marketers who were either homophobic or told jokes at the expense of gay people.
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