Guest Review

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David Apicella

Executive Creative Director

Ogilvy & Mather/New York

Howard Willmott

Executive Creative Director

Publicis/New York

1 star-stay the hell away from my monkey! 2 stars-you can look at my monkey 3 stars-you can stand next to my monkey 4 stars- touch my monkey!

1. Quiznos "We Love the Subs"

Animated "spongmonkeys," superimposed over images of a store and a sub, sing the praises of Quiznos while hitting major sales points: "They are tasty, they are crunchy, they are warm because they toast them!!!"

Agency: The Martin Agency CD: Kerry Feuerman CW: Raymond McKinney AD: Ty Harper Agency Producer: Steve Humble Live-Action Director: Henry Bjoin/Bjoin Films Animation Director: Joel Veitch

DA I love this spot. It's bizarre. It's strange. It's weird and it makes me laugh every time. Quiznos has a history of doing wacky advertising and I've got to believe that this one is pretty popular with the sub-eating masses, which I'm guessing are mostly young guys. It's got a clear product story, it's funny and you can't miss it or forget it. Plus it taps into a pop culture Internet thing. That's good enough for me. 3 stars

HW: Full marks for getting something arresting and memorable onto our TV screens. Zero marks for being irrelevant to the product and brand. Whatever these singing icons are (and I've asked around the creative floor and no one else knows either), they aren't a relevant mouthpiece for the brand. They look like something that may live out the back near the trash cans, which isn't something I want to think about when I eat. The tagline doesn't sum up the idea either, so I remember the icons and not the product or the benefit. A wasted opportunity with an obviously brave client. 1 star

2. Fox Sports Net "Parking Lot"

Fox Sports follows Bay Area fans Fred and Ernie as they grow up as twins joined at the index finger. When Ernie becomes a fair-weather fan and roots for a visiting team, local fans beat him up.

Agency: TBWA/Chiat/Day/San Francisco ECD: Chuck McBride CDs: Bo Coyner, Kai Zastrow CWs: Bo Coyner, Mike Harris ADs: Kai Zastrow, Brandon Mugar Director: Lionel Goldstein/Czar

DA: I watched this spot three times because I just didn't get it. Then I did, but I didn't think it was all that funny. It's a little complicated and it feels like it's trying too hard. 2 stars

HW: Here, at least, the central idea does relate to the product and I definitely understand the benefit. Do I get any of the excitement of that benefit? Do I want to see this spot explain it to me more than once? Do I want to hear the voiceover explain to me exactly what I'm seeing on screen? No. Fox Sports is a brief most teams would cut off their right arm for, or at least the right arm of their conjoined twin. 1 star

3. GE "Lassie"

Using footage from the show with added CG effects, the spot touts GE securities technology, as Lassie defends Timmy from a mountain lion, using Matrix-style moves.

Agency: BBDO/New York CCO: Ted Sann ECD: Don Schneider CD/CW: Tom Darbyshire CD/AD: Ted Shaine Director: Joe Pytka/Pytka

DA: Who doesn't like Lassie? The idea is strong, the production is great, it feels big and important and fresh for GE. But I've got two problems with it. The gratuitous product sequence seems, well, gratuitous. And the karate-fighting dog was done famously as a bear for John West Salmon in the U.K.. 2 stars

HW: I've seen this martial arts technique used even more than I've seen Lassie used in spots. On top of that, I always saw Lassie as a problem solver, not as a "security system". So, again, it doesn't seem relevant or different. The jump to General Electric at the end is too far even for this dog. 1 star

4. Massachusetts Lottery "Hotel"

A hotel desk worker copes with attendees of a mime convention, interpreting complaints and accepting invisible tips, until he can go home and watch the lottery drawing.

Agency: HHCC/Boston CDs: Marty Donohue, Spencer Deadrick CW: Rick McHugh AD: Dan O'Donnell Agency Producer: Tom Foley Director: Patrick Sherman/Anonymous Content

DA: Only the very brave try mime jokes. I guess this is OK, but I can't really get past the mimes. 1 star

HW: You shouldn't have to contrive an unbelievably bad day at the office in order to get someone to pay a dollar for the chance to win $250 million. This is the biggest benefit of the bunch, and it doesn't begin to come across. The whole spot is devoted to telling the viewer how bad things can be when it could be devoted to telling you how amazing winning could be. I want to be lured by the opportunity, not told my life sucks. (I know that already). 1 star

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