Sliding into Home

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This week, the Old Spice Guy Who's Not Bruce Campbell returned to show us how the history-soaked man musk performs on the athletic field. Sure, last time he told us how it performs in such manly situations as "basketball, recon and Frenching" but now it's time to actually show the Old Spice at work.
We spoke to Wieden + Kennedy, Portland copywriter Michael Illick about the new spot and why the title of it reminded us of an old poem that ends with "cha cha cha."

Being a baseball themed spot, why call it "Foam"?
Yeah, it's from the old rhyme, when you're sliding into home and you're pants are full of foam. It's totally about diarrhea. That's the kind of little joys you can get out of this ridiculous job.

Is this campaign a good fit for sliding things like that in?
Yeah, absolutely. But to be honest, my goal in advertising leans toward figuring out what kind of sneaky bad shit I can do.

Where did the idea for the spot come about?
Well, we're always getting briefs from dopey media people who tell us, "Old Spice has a big market share in Major League Baseball" and they want to do all kinds of big sports stuff. So we just decided to do every bad sports metaphor we could cram into one 30 second spot. Hopefully then they'll choke on it but the real human beings of the world would find it funny.
With Old Spice, even though it's this really iconic brand and you tend to think about your grandfather wearing it and its other tough guy imagery, we're in a time and place where we can be silly as hell. I guess because we're going up against Axe and Tag which is just sex, sex, sex, for us we choose to go with ridiculous.
This spot seemed just so simple and dumb and it was written in, like, five minutes. (Art director) Eric Baldwin and I originally just figured he'd slide in a straight line forever. We hadn't pictured him rounding third. But smarter heads prevailed.

Considering Old Spice's grandfatherly connotations, it seems the ridiculous approach is an effective way to go with the advertising.
I've got a lot of ideas for this thing. I'd like to see Old Spice go so far in the whole Robert Mitchum direction that people wouldn't realize it was serious. The way everything is so flashy and ridiculous now, if you have this stern old man telling you to wear it and there's no obvious joke, I think people would be like, "WTF?" And that would be just as effective. Plus, I'd probably be able to go home at three.
But this was a really fun spot to do. Working with Tom Kuntz was great and I'd also like to point out that Eric Baldwin, my partner, is inept.

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