10 Follies

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1. Cashing in on Preparation H

The "Man in Black" will not be singing for Preparation H. The relatives of Johnny Cash, who died in 2003, opposed an effort to use "Ring of Fire" in a spot for the hemorrhoid remedy. The idea came to a TV producer who was suffering from the malady. Merle Kilgore, co-writer of the song, was said to have supported the plan. But Roseanne Cash called the idea "moronic."

2. Pit stop

First, Unilever unleashed Pitman for Axe. Then, Coca-Cola Co. ran a TV spot centering on an underarm: During a game break, a man presses a cold can of Coke into his armpit, then hands the can to his unsuspecting buddy. But the ad, from Berlin Cameron/Red Cell, New York, got shelved after a complaint from Coke director and former president, Donald Keough.

3. Kitty-killing Ka

A U.K. ad for the Ford Sportka showed a computer-animated cat being decapitated when it sticks its head through a closing sunroof. The Internet-only ad from WPP Group's Ogilvy & Mather was tagged "Ford Sportka. The Ka's evil twin." Ford insisted it rejected the ad, though it was mysteriously e-mailed around the world.

4. Sub rats

Frankly, they looked like goggle-eyed rodents. Maybe that's why Quizno's exterminated its "spongmonkeys" only six months after their ad debut. The goal was to create buzz and attract young adults, but a crucial older demographic-the franchisees-were less receptive to the "spokesthings" spawned by Interpublic Group of Cos.' Martin Agency, Richmond, Va.

5. loaded and driving

It doesn't get more all-American than guns, whiskey and fast cars. Nascar opened the door to liquor, leading Diageo's Crown Royal and Brown- Forman's Jack Daniel's to sign on. At about the same time, Smith & Wesson became a primary sponsor of a SKI Motorsports Chevrolet in Nascar's Busch Series.

6. Cola-war casualty

You don't have to be a cursing Dale Earnhardt Jr. to incur a $10,000 fine from Nascar. Jimmie Johnson was fined for placing a sign in front of a PowerAde bottle that Nascar officials had put on top of his car. Mr. Johnson had just won a race and made the move to hide the Coca-Cola Co. sports drink because he has an endorsement deal with Pepsi-Cola.

7. Experimental learning

Out-of-the-box thinking may work better at an agency than a school. Wieden & Kennedy co-founder Dan Wieden caused some squeaking at his alma mater, the University of Oregon, when he assigned students to overcome various fears creatively. Among the tasks: One student was asked to go streaking and another to lie to a family member about his sexual orientation.

8. Nothing for something

Tribune Co. wants readers to start paying for its Red Eye tabloid in Chicago. But it can be hard to get young people to shell out for something they've been getting for free. Chicago Tribune employees were spotted in several locations offering quarters to passers-by who promised to use the coins to buy the 25ยข Red Eye.

9. False advertising

Absolut had to hunker down in court after actor Jason Lewis sued Absolut Spirits Co. for using as a real ad a faux ad that appeared on HBO's "Sex & the City." The fake ad, labeled "Absolut Hunk," featured Mr. Lewis naked on a bed, along with a strategically placed vodka bottle. Omnicom Group's Ketchum, Los Angeles, was also named in the suit.

10. The bear bans beer

The Russian parliament, trying to combat the overimbibing of beer, passed a law to severely restrict its marketing. The law bans beer advertising on TV and radio from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Even during that late-night window, ad content, including slogans, is restricted. Some observers wondered whether vodka makers were spurring the action.

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