Mon 8 Feb 2010
“Hope I die before I get old…” P. Townsend, age 97.
FLOTV– The Who’s “My Generation” plays as we see news clips of our lives. Swatches of history are laid out in a mosaic that frankly is astounding to see back-to-back. Jerry was right– what a long, strange trip it’s been. The message is simple: never miss a moment. You don’t have to, babe, not if you’ve got a FLOTV. Oh, did I mention Will.i.am is in this spot– not sure why, but there you go. Nice spot, I toss a flag for flagrant use of celebrity when they didn’t have to, but one of the smartest spots so far. Does not feel like it fits well with the previous p-whipped guy shopping spot, but there you go. A campaign for these A.D.D. times.
NFL Network– Cool spot. Beautiful cinematography, all hail football– it gives us something to put commercials into.
Prince of Persia– Looks like The Mummy XXIII , lots of special effects and action. Think I’ll wait for the DVD.
Motorola– Megan Fox is in a bath and takes a picture of herself and wonders what would happen if she sent it out. Then we see phone lines explode, a mother knocking on door of her son;s room wanting to know what he’s doing in there (oh, mom!), a gay couple slapping each other and so on. Then Megan says never mind, she won’t send the picture after all and I wonder why they bothered making this commercial. Phones that take pictures, what black magic is this?
Volkswagen– We see various VW cars drive by and people punch one another. A play off the old punch-bug game called punch-dub. Feels forced, but at least there is a heritage to build on. Makes me think more of the Beetle than any of their new products, though.
Denny’s– A man talks to chickens and warns them that soon Denny’s will be offering a free grand slam breakfast. The chickens are worried, concerned. The man says this is great news for people but bad news for chickens (because they’re going to be working overtime). Not a great spot but a great message– FREE FOOD! What’s not to like?
Michelob Ultra– Lance Armstrong and other super healthy people run and ride and push themselves to the limit then chill at the bar with this beer-like substance. Me no like. Me like fat people beer. Burp.
HomeAway.com– The Griswalds (Chevy & Beverly) are getting constant disappointments at their hotel. They’re billed for the ‘complimentary water’… the desk clerk explains that it is “complimentery with an ‘e’ water– the water compliments the room decor.” Good joke. The whole point is that HomeAway.com can save you money when you hit the road. Sounds interesting. Not sure I needed Chevy & Bev, would have been good without them, but I guess new companies need a little fame to rub against.
Bridgestone– Dastardly evilniks have a roadblock set-up for the James Bond guy who drives up in a sportscar this rainy night. They tell him “Your Bridgestones or your life!” He skids to a stop, hot woman gets out…. wait for it… bad guy says, “I said your money or your life, not your wife!” (Hear the rimshot?) You’d think bad people could afford to just buy a set of Bridgestones, but apparently not.
kgb– A stupid spot for a service started by the Russian secret police about finding the answers to questions by texting. Uses sumo wrestlers. Has there ever been a good spot done with sumo wrestlers? Not that I recall.
Coca-Cola– A beautiful shot spot where a man sleepwalks in Africa past many jungle dangers for a Coke. He ends up going to a fridge and opens it, grabs a Coke (no, there are no Bud Lights in there). He walks back, drinks Coke and pets a big cat, all while still asleep. A nice spot. Surprising, entertaining, likable, nice.
E-TRADE– Oh, those talking babies. Baby boy calls baby girl on computer cam. Little girl asks him if he’s seeing another little girl she calls a ‘milk-a-holic’. Other little girl enters frame and asks, “Milk-a-what?” I smell catch phrase. This will be a buzz-worthy spot. The babies will become more famous. Does that translate to e-Trade business? It must, they’ve been doing this campaign for a long while.
U.S. Census Bureau– The Christopher Guest company of egotist filmmakers are going to make a film called Snapshot of America… but what do you know, that’s what the U.S. Census is all about. A goofy idea. I love the characters but the idea is weak as a drunk’s knees. Why is this supposed to make us feel good about being counted?
Google– Ironic. So far the commercials have been big on special effects, celebrities, famous music, sophomoric gags and sexy women. Now here comes a spot that has none of those. It’s a lock-off shot of a computer screen that shows someone Google-ing. And it is so true to Google, showing how one thing leads to another to another to another and another more. And the story just builds from hunting for a job to Paris to a church to marriage to a crib. It’s an amazing journey told on Google. It wraps up with the simple line: Search on. What a perfect idea. Smart, relevant, interesting and compelling. It’s the anti-Bing. This is the best spot in the Super Bowl, so far.
KIA Sorento– Sock Monkey and other toy pals are getting their groove on in a KIA and end up ripping it up in Vegas, cut to see the toys not as characters but as toys in the back seat of the vehicle as a kid gets in. Car starts and goes down road. A lot of razzle and dazzle for not a lot of purpose or reason. It’s about the vehicle, stupid! (But it’s always good to see sock monkey– wonder what he was like to work with…)
RoundUp– It kill weeds. Got weeds? You might consider buying some. This may be the best weed killer spot in the Super Bowl.
Select 55– A light commercial for a new light beer. Bottle floats in air, Don’t let me down plays. O.K., thank you.
NFL– Incredible cinematography of players and fans as music builds and the league says “Thank you”. Nice, simple. Well done, start the wave.
VIZIO– Giant claws grab the best of internet sites and and entertainment properties, they all are assembled in the new VIZIO. The message is the best of the internet and entertainment are now in the VIZIO. O.K., now can I have my TV back?
Emerald Nuts/Pop Secret– A gonzo trip with a guy feeding jumping people at a water show Emerald nuts and Pop Secret popcorn. Goofy, and not in a good way.
Dante’s Inferno– A guy battles all sorts of demons. Stunning visuals, action as Bill Withers sings “Ain’t No Sunshine”. This is for a new video game where you battle the forces of hell. Looks like sales heaven. Great spot for the product. Just show how cool it is and get out of the way.
Budweiser–The big storyteller spot. A longhorn calf looks on as the Clydesdales go by. Title tells us it’s three years later. Now we see a large longhorn look on as the Clydesdales come down the road. The longhorn charges through the fence and joins the beer horsies. Two guys are standing by. One says, “Nothing comes between friends.” The other says, “Especially fences.” Oh, does this thing ever feel forced. Where’s the charm? It may be time to take the Clydesdales to the glue factory, or at least find a fresh story line for them.
Honda Accord Crosstour– Cool animation of a squirrel putting away nuts and such and ends up in the vehicle that has a place for everything. Animation is killer, car looks nice. Good stuff, stands out.
Denny’s– Chickens across America do various things as “the Battle Hymn of The Republic” plays. The wrap up is that Denny’s is giving away free Grand Slams on Tuesday. It’s going to take a lot of eggs. Yeah, I’m thinking Denny’s will be pretty packed on Tuesday. As for Wednesday and beyond…
Audi– A terrific spot. We see people getting busted for violations of not being eco-friendly. Cheap Trick’s song “The Dream Police” is changed to “The Green Police”– could have done without this– and it’s visually surprising and entertaining. We see a roadblock where the Green Police give the go-ahead to the new Audi because it is eco-love. Elaborate spot for a simple premise. Audi is awfully green. Well done.
Taco Bell– Charkes Barkley walks through scenes carrying Taco Bell crap. He recites Dr. Seuss-like poetic copy. Had enough yet? I have.
Doritos– Guys at a club enjoy a bag of Doritos that one dude got from “Tim’s locker”– the other dude says this is bad. Why? Because Tim is a Doritos freak. Cut to man in an outfit made of Doritos swinging a weapon and he leaps and attacks. Cut to logo. These spots are as artificial as reading the ingredient list on a bag of Doritos.
Bud Light– Wow, it’s girl’s book club, and the ladies have a bucket of Bud Lights. Guy comes in, and get this, he wants to talk about chick books! What ensues is a certified LAFF RIOT. Oh, sarcasm, why do you feel so right?
Hyundai– The plant in Alabama makes the Sonata as we see a bunch of hands carrying the car through the various production stages. There are no machines, just hands. The car goes through the stages of assembly, finish. The simple point is this: with so many quality inspections, it’s like the Sonata is hand-made. Nice. I think Hyundai will be selling a lot of Sonatas. .
E-TRADE– Another baby spot. Missed most of it. Was it any good?
Sketchers– This stands out for it’s crappy production values and lack of any real concept. But, it does stand out, I give it that.
GoDaddy.com– Danica Patrick is being interviewed by two women about the controversy of her being the hot new GoDaddy girl and they’d like to know if they could be part of the hotness… blah blah, they rip their shirts off to show T-shirts directing people to the site. Please go, GoDaddy, go now.
Denny’s– A woman gets ready to blow out candles on her birthday cake and a chicken rises and screams. The message: get a Free Grand Slam on your birthday! Denny’s is cornering the market on free breakfast! IHOP, whatcha gonna do now to rival free food?
E-TRADE– Now the talking babies are on a plane. They’re talking about something or other but all I hear are babies… babies on a plane (where’s Samuel L. Jackson when you need him)! They over-power whatever the message is. No wonder W.C. Fields hated working with babies.
Chevrolet– We own the company now and our ads are telling us our cars are winning consumer awards. We like us! Although it’s not a stand-out spot, it is a smart message. Let people know other people like the cars.
Chunky Soups– Here’s the message: go on line for a $5 coupon. ‘Nuff said. Cheaper soup. That should sell.
Pace Picante Sauce– Got me what this is about. A woman watches TV and cooks with Pace. Maybe I can’t pay attention any more. Has my brain turned to mush already?
FLOTV– Lots of sports celebs tell us we can get FLOTV in our car. Thanks, technology. The branding on this campaign is all over the place. The unifying campaign epoxy seems to be the logo. Hmmm, that’s pretty lame.
Intel– We see a couple geeks as they age. In the stages of their development they witness new stages of technology. The wrap-up is the new Intel processor. Simple. I always liked the group of engineers singing the obnoxious Intel notes at the end of the spot.
Sun Life– The company wants to be better known so they want to use Cirque du Soleil because it’s name has to do with sun. Oh, brother, I think my mind is now officially toast, which should go with the mush it turned into recently. Regardless, this commercial is crap.
WalMart– A hubby is busted buying his wife Valentine’s Day gifts. There. Not bad, simple message. WalMart’s got lots of Valentine’s stuff, so there!
Hyundai– The Dude asks “What if we made luxury available for everybody?” Fun visuals of everyday people and situations with super luxury touches. It’s surprising and fun to watch. The point is the Genesis makes luxury affordable to everybody. Very well done.
The Crazies– This new movie looks like a hoot. Hey, you had me at “The.”
Final observations. A lackluster year for spots. Standouts spots are Google and Hyundai.
I am left to wonder why all guys in commercials are neutered idiots, and why exactly are we so obsessed with celebrities, famous songs and talking babies and animals?
Oh, one last note– The Saints won.
That’s the 2010 Super Bowl commercial wrap-up, feel free to dispute, agree and add your perspective. Lint welcomes all, all welcome Lint! Thanks.