Guest Review

Published on .

Mark Monteiro


Los Angeles

Simon Needham

ECD, Attik

San Francisco

1. Vault "Field of Dreams"

An energy drink fuels a father's dream for his young son as he gets carried away while building him a football field.

Agency: Publicis/N.Y. CDs: David Droga, Duncan Marshall AD/CWs: Eric Quennoy, Jason Levine Director: Baker Smith/Harvest Editor: Rick Lawley/The Whitehouse

MM: Let me start by saying that creating something, anything, is infinitely harder and far more honorable than being a critic of it. I want to like this commercial, but I just can't. It all seems so familiar. There's nothing really wrong with the commercial; it said something relevant about the product, I got it and it was kind of funny, but it seems long and slow and I just didn't care much when it was over. (2)

SN: One of the better ads I've seen and well shot-although I always want to ask, "Will I remember the product?" Somehow it feels like you could just swap out the bottle and replace it with another and you would never know the difference. While entertaining, I'm guessing it's a fairly new brand, and therefore I feel it should have worked harder at establishing the name of the product. (2)

2. Mini "Filling Station"

A Mini driver wants only the best for his car, laying his coat over a puddle, forming a picnic and even sampling the gasoline for the vehicle.

Agency: Jung von Matt CDs: Oliver Voss, Gotz Ulmer CWs: Dennis May, Jo-Marie Farwick AD: Martin Terhart Director: Peter Darley Miller/ Editor: Fred Fouquet/Outpost Digital

MM: I think the group that made this commercial may have had too much of that energy drink from the first commercial under review. Especially the editor. The cut is so frenetic, and it just doesn't seem suited to the idea at all. I think it was a love story. I get the feeling that at some point they realized they didn't have a strong enough idea, so they tried to fluff it up with technique. I'll take the bulldog spot any day. (1)

SN: So as it is Monday morning and I had a relatively big weekend-maybe now isn't the best time to review this spot! The still-frame technique, although different, really stresses me out and certainly doesn't contribute to the storyline, which I believe is, "I love my Mini so much I actually want to personally sample the gas before I put it in!" Overall, it just irritates me, and I think the type at the end is too dark and not on long enough to read-which is a shame, as I guess that was the punchline. It's cool to try unusual techniques, but on this occasion, I feel the commercial would have benefited from a simpler execution. (1)

3. Reebok "Hardcore B-Ballin"

Pro basketball players, who are recognizable on sight to hardcore fans, hence no need to ID them in the ads, show their love of the game.

Agency: McGarryBowen ECD: Randy Van Kleeck ECD/AD: Warren Eakins CW: Mike Smith Photographer: John Huet

MM: I imagine it must be getting pretty hard to come up with a fresh ad for a shoe company, but these ads have a strong point of view and they stay true to it. They're smart, they're interesting and the photography is gorgeous. A really strong effort in a very tough category. (3)

SN: Nice type and cool urban pics; the copy, however, feels a little cliched. I can only imagine the writer wrote this lot after a large Chinese meal. Perhaps consider a full-time job writing fortune cookies? (Just kidding, of course.) Honestly, though, the sports industry is one of the great industries where doing something totally different can pay off, and the audience will really appreciate it. Unfortunately, I feel that these ads are doing pretty much what most sports ads do-they don't differentiate enough from other brands. (2)

4. Majesco Entertainment "Zombies"

A website that first appears to be for a woman's fragrance is "infected," and the model turns into a zombie before the site redirects you to the site for the PS2/PSP game Infected.

Agency: The Concept Farm CD: Griffin Stenger CW: Patrick Cummings AD: Emily Strand Web Design: Robbie Roxas

MM: Buried deep down in the many varied and mostly uninteresting layers of this site is the germ of a great idea: The special government reports on what's happening and what to do. If only that germ could have mutated and taken over the site, we might have ended up with something really wonderful. Instead, what I see is a site that seems like a collection bin for any idea anyone could throw out there. Sorry to be so harsh. If it will keep any pins out of my voodoo doll, I still think The Concept Farm site with the chicken is one of the best ever. (1)

SN: When I first looked at this, I thought I had the wrong item to review, but I opened it anyway. I guess it took too long to download on my computer, because I just didn't understand what it was for. However, I finally sussed it . . . Hurrah! So, I like the idea of a faux site, but I'm still trying to work out why, when you have zombies and dead flesh to promote, you would need to develop a boring perfume site? If you're going to do a faux site and the target is young guys, then at least make it a faux porn site or something, as I'm sure the kids would stick around a little longer if there was the possibility of checking out scantily clad ladies who turn into zombies. Overall, I like the thought, but not the idea or the execution. (2)

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