More Super Bowl recaps. This time, we highlight four from all over the country from NYC to DC…Jax to LAX. By now, you know it’s the most-viewed Super Bowl and the second highest eyeball-attracting TV show after the finale of M*A*S*H. You know everybody has weighed in on the Bowl spots…but the PROS have a better eye.
From NYC come the thoughts of LYNN GRASZ, who handles marketing for clients, including entertainment types, after being a promo pro of renown. She chose a nut theme for her faves:
Cashew Cutie….Planter’s unibrow cashew commercial made me go NUTS for this clever, funny, mini-movie that had so much going on, I craved more. The make-up was goofy, the casting was goofier but it all was so appealing that I’m seriously thinking of rubbing cashews on my body.
Screaming Squirrel…I loved this happy little enchanted squirrel who found a nut in the middle of the road and who began screaming with all of his woodland friends at an on-coming car. The kicker was the woman passenger who joined the screamers while her cool-driving husband gently swerved around the little nut-stricken squirrel. The product…Bridgestone tires, which are the worst tires in the world (my opinion) and I’d never buy them, but I loved this bunch of screaming animals.
Will Farrell, Bud Light… Will Farrell is a very funny, likeable guy who can make a spot look ad-libbed, while doing a nutty sell. I loved the way he spoofed sports endorsements while positioning the Bud Light in his crotch as a phallic symbol that was so obvious it was funny.
Down in DC, we hear from ANDREA LAIGN, who is writing and producing for STAN MELTON at ABC affil WJLA. She kept it short and sweet: 2 words: E*Trade Baby (unless E*Trade is 2 words, then make it 3). Then she also added: Unibrow Planters Lady…
Heading down the Atlantic Coast, we have GLEN SEBOLD, the CSD at Gannett’s Jacksonville, FL duopoly, NBC affil WTLV and ABC affil WJXX, who’s a New York native and has done work with Giant’s Coach TOM COUGHLIN for his charity in Jacksonville: I am so over the cutesy “Baby Who Can Talk” thing… or at least I thought I was. However, the E-Trade spots with the regurgitating cribber who earns enough “coin” to hire a personal clown were my hands-down faves. Very funny and, importantly, they worked in terms of the product being advertised. Look how easy it is to buy stock! Look how much money I’m saving! Look how creepy a clown can be! So I give E-Trade a pass on using a hackneyed set-up and reward them with my first annual “Glenny” award for the best Super Bowl spots because I laughed so hard.
Other thoughts –
FedEx is typically clever and outrageous with the carrier pigeons spot. I just love the understated payoff, “Let’s switch to FedEx.” While the Budweiser Rocky Clydesdale spot was kinda nice, several of the Bud Light spots were, well, light. The caveman, fire breather, flying, and cheese party spots had payoffs that you could see coming from a mile away. And I’m no prude, but I just think using the term “suck” in a spot is gratuitously crude (caveman spot).
The best part of my second favorite spot, the Bridgestone “screaming” ad, was the tiny scream the grasshopper was issuing. My biggest beef with Bridgestone was the tease that we would be rid of Richard Simmons forever. If only the tires weren’t THAT good….
And, finally, when the fat guy clamps jumper cables on his nipples, is it really necessary to super the following on the bottom of the screen: WARNING- Do not attempt. Double duh.
Last for today, but certainly not least, is one of my favorite guys: PAUL FEY of World Wide Wadio, the company that produces the most clever spots imaginable: The Super Bowl spot I admired most came at the very beginning of the telecast. Apple’s spot for the MacBook Air (like all their advertising) is elegantly simple in concept and design. (check it out…click here) (http://www.apple.com/macbookair/#ad) We see the product being removed from, then placed on top of, an inter-office envelope — brilliantly demonstrating the single, compelling point: “The world’s thinnest notebook.” No voiceover required… although a jaunty little song called “New Soul” by Yael Naim (I had to look it up) adds quirk and a smile. Not just a great “Super Bowl spot.” A great spot. Period.
As for the rest of the self-consciously “Super Bowl-sized” spots, most left me cold. (They’re simply trying too hard to be clever.) But I did love Coke’s “Parade Balloons” spot… and SoBe’s “Thriller” production number, featuring Naomi Campbell and a dance troupe of lizards, was extremely arresting. Finally, the NFL’s true story recreation of how Chester Pitts went from oboe player to football player was genuinely surprising and inspirational.
We got more…come back tomorrow.
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