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And Other TV Spots of the Week

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Nascar War Zone
Marketer: Fox Sports/Nascar
Brand: Fox Sports/Nascar
Title: "Kurt"
Agency: Taxi, New York

What is it that so disturbs me about this edgy concept from Taxi portraying Nascar racers as if they were war zone heroes instead of motorheads who drive in circles all day? The camera work, blast effect, and radio traffic are all designed to evoke the same emotions as those we feel watching news clips of the latest firefights in Fallujah or Tikrit -- where the participants don't get to sew product promos all over their uniforms.

Honda's Impossible Dream
Marketer: Honda
Brand: Honda
Title: "Dreams"
Agency: Wieden & Kennedy, London

A far cry from the mesmerizing but somewhat esoteric essence of 'Grrr' or 'Cog,' this is a Honda commercial that mainstream consumers will not only instantly 'get,' but will also carry away with them for a long time to come. I did. In fact, nearly a week after I first viewed it, I'm still humming Andy Williams' 'The Impossible Dream' that is the sound track. And as I hum, my mind replays the images of the various vehicles in the narrative that so memorably illustrates the Power of Dreams, which is also Honda's latest tagline.

Up From the Streets
Marketer: Jordan Brand
Brand: Melo 5.5 Shoes
Title: "B More"
Agency: Wieden & Kennedy, New York

With music that makes you want to cheer for an underdog's triumph and moody street scenes from inner-city Baltimore, director Antoine Fuqua has crafted a heroic vision for Carmelo Anthony's rise from hardscrabble street kid to Denver Nuggets star. But in the end, it's all about Jordan Brands' new Melo 5.5 footwear and this underlying message to its young viewers: 'Be More. Go buy a pair of these $125.00 shoes.'

The Pacified Life
Marketer: Sterilgarda
Brand: Sterilgarda Milk
Title: "Milk That Makes Us Grow"
Agency: Black Pencil, Italy

Now here's a strange one out of Italy. Director Adriano Falconi shot street scenes around the old town of Lodi that appear normal except for the fact that every human being, young and old, is sucking a pacifier. In the end we learn the spot is a pitch for Sterilgarda milk. It's tagline is 'The Milk That Made Us Grow.'

Readable Pringles
Marketer: Procter & Gamble
Brand: Pringles Prints
Title: "Stumper-Guinness"
Agency: Grey Worldwide, New York

The latest project in Pringle's special 'print' edition potato crisps crosses the spirit of fortune cookies with Guinness World Records 2006. Ingest fascinating facts, amazing feats and remarkable record-breakers as you crunch through your next tube.

Slow-Motion Barroom
Marketer: Comcast
Brand: Comcast Broadband
Title: "Loading Bar"
Agency: Goodby Silverstein & Partners

The poor wretches still stuck with dial-up access will readily identify with this vision of a bar where everything -- even the beer pouring from the tap -- moves at a hopelessly sluggish speed. It's a cute way for Comcast to make its point about the life-changing nature of broadband.

Fresca Float
Marketer: Coca-Cola Co.
Brand: Fresca
Title: "Dance"
Agency: Campbell Mithun, Minneapolis

You were probably wondering what those tiny things swimming around in your Fresca were. Now, this microscopic exploration clears up the mystery.

Beach Dreams
Marketer: Antigua Tourist Board
Brand: Antigua Tourism
Title: "Beaches"
Agency: PPI Group, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

We include this wonderfully colorful and highly rythmic ad about beaches to provide solace to those poor souls from Manhattan to Portland, Ore., who have been plunged into the bitter cold days of dreary winter. In fact, as I write this, snow is falling here in Manhattan.

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