BETC Euro RSCG/Paris
1. Lee Cooper "Cut to Compliment"
This print campaign shows unlikely models, including a gorilla and a skeleton, wearing jeans that fit surprisingly well.
Agency: Publicis Conseil/Paris CD: Olivier Altmann CWs: Guilhem Arnal, Bruno Delhomme ADs: Jorge Carreno, Robin de Lestrade Photographer: Nadav Kander Retoucher: Andy D'Cruze
RB: About 20 years ago, there was much scandal around a campaign for Wrangler showing a skeleton and a fetus each wearing a pair of jeans. Ten years ago, Levi's did the same thing. Goes to show that it's obviously very difficult to communicate in the jeans category without using a skeleton. 1 star
BB: I must admit, I wasn't very familiar with this brand. I do know that it's not related to our client, Lee. But even with my ignorance, these ads left me a bit puzzled. They're kind of funny, but what are they intended to make me think or feel? They're not highly conceptual or fashionable, unless I'm missing something. But maybe they'll sweep D&AD or Cannes and I'll be proved completely wrong. 2 stars
2. Nintendo www.startmayhem.com
This interactive site assigns personalities to the various GameBoy colors, with online films for each.
Agency: Sedgwick Rd. CD: Jim Walker Interactive Director: Mitch Brandow CW: Scott Stripling ADs: Eric Peterson, Zach Hitner Director: Will Hyde/Fad Animation Sound Design: Clatter & Din Web Design: If/Then Studio
RB: This product is speaking to a games-addicted audience used to a hyper-real, rich world of 3-D images, special effects and complex scenarios. From this point of view, this website is a real disappointment. However, the product animation is not bad. 1 star
BB: I guess I'm partially to blame for this online film craze, but these are not BMW Films. Actually, they remind me of the charming old Pixar short Luxor Jr., which was created in 1986, I believe. But they're not as well done. And this is 2004. They do bring some personality to the product, in a simple way. And they're not overtly commercial, which is the curse of so many online films. But I'm afraid the Nintendo audience, of all people, expects more. 2 stars
3. Nike "Michael Vick Experience"
An amusement park ride takes one young rider through a football game to show him what it feels like to be Michael Vick on the field.
Agency: Wieden + Kennedy Portland CW: Derek Barnes AD: Ryan O'Rourke Director: Ulf Johansson/Smith & Jones
RB: Stars are there to make us dream, and this is an amusing way to show what it means to be in a star's shoes: what's funny is that in this case it's not very glamorous. In fact, it's almost dangerous and we're not sure that we really want to have another go. Also interesting is representing the sporting experience in such a naive way, with all the thrills and spills of a fairground attraction. 2 stars
BB: Last year's Nike spot promoting Nikegridiron.com was quite a visual statement, so the follow-up had big shoes to fill. I think Wieden was wise to go in a different direction, rather
than risk comparison. While this spot is different, it has the same effect of driving you to a fantastic online experience. It's a clever fusion of America's infatuation with gaming, sports and theme park rides. (I guess I must be un-American in that regard.) And it does so with a smile 4 stars
4. Toyota "Wheel"
A wheel travels the world solo.
Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi/L.A. CCO: Steve Rabosky ECD: Harvey Marco CW: Steve Chavez AD: Steve Levit Director: Carl Erik Rinsch/RSA USA
RB: At first I thought that his was an ad for Firestone or Michelin. That said, even if it was an ad for tires, I wouldn't recommend it. The work is of a universal style that we've already seen so many times before, as if derived from a huge stock of interchangeable images in global advertising. 1 star
BB: This spot doesn't make a big statement, and some will likely criticize it for that, but it does what it does in a big and engaging way. It's beautifully produced and the soundtrack is dead-on. There's also enough wit to keep it from ever getting sappy. It certainly fits Toyota, which has come to epitomize mainstream America, even if it is a Japanese brand. I just couldn't go to four stars because of the ridiculously high bar set by last year's "Girlfriend" Toyota spot from Saatchi, one of my all-time favorites. 2 stars