The travel industry has been hit hard during the pandemic, but now that the world is preparing to open back up, d-to-c brand Away dropped a new line of accessories to accompany its popular luggage. To do so, the company went old school with a printed catalog that spoofs SkyMall’s famous back-of-the-plane seat mag. The products include familiar travel gear such as a neck pillow, blanket and compression socks, but the catalog promotes how they can serve folks well while they’re still locked down at home. Who knew your head needed extra support while throwing pots or watering plants? Who doesn’t need a travel blanket while you’re waiting for your ribs to reach perfect fall-off-the-bone tenderness on the grill?
Volvo has gone way beyond to show consumers that safety is priority No. 1. That’s led to innovative ideas like one push that encouraged parents to be late for work so they wouldn’t speed to school, and a library of shared research aimed at ensuring equal protection for all kinds of passengers. Its new global campaign from Grey takes that mission to the extreme with what it’s billing as the “Ultimate Safety Test.” The film promoting the “test” looks back on Volvo’s history around safety then travels to the arctic to show Volvo embarking on an extreme experiment involving an SUV dangled 100 feet in the air from a crane. Turns out it’s just a set-up to announce something even more ambitious—the brand’s plans to become a completely carbon-neutral company by 2040.
Ryan Reynolds is back. Or rather, Satan, the spokes-character he and his agency Maximum Effort created to promote Match.com last year. This time, Lucifer now happily hitched, has crossed over to a spot for Reynolds’ own Mint Mobile. Now, he’s employed at “Big Wireless,” where he wreaks havoc on the lives of people with pricey phone plans and bad customer service—all a ploy to promote Reynolds’ more consumer-friendly telecom brand.
Academy Award-winning director and actor Taika Waititi has voiced beloved pop culture characters like philosophical rock man Korg from “Thor” and “The Mandalorian” droid IG-11. This week, he lent his vocals to a deceptively cute but ultimately heart-wrenching spot from the Humane Society. Waititi plays Ralph, a true company man whose devotion to his job has blinded him to the life he should really be leading. It turns out he’s a cosmetic test animal, and his work ethic has cost him his eye, his dignity and no doubt (eventually) his life. Spencer Susser wrote and directed the film.
COVID-19 vaccines have been rolling out around the country, and with them a slew of ads recommending that people get their shots. Among the best we’ve seen so far is this simple one from Google, which relies on the brand’s classic search bar storytelling framework to illustrate the possibilities of life post-pandemic—once everyone is vaccinated. “Get back to what you love,” the spot says.
Ann-Christine Diaz is the Creativity Editor at Ad Age. She has been covering the creative world of advertising and marketing for more than a decade. Outside of the job, she can be found getting in touch with her own creativity.
Jessica Wohl is Ad Age's senior editor. She was most recently a senior reporter covering the food and restaurant industries for Ad Age. She also is one of the hosts of the Marketer’s Brief podcast and Creativity Top 5 Live. Jessica previously reported for the Chicago Tribune and Reuters.