Out to Launch

New York Fries, a Canadian French fry chain, is celebrating its 25th anniversary this month using a spokesman who was incredibly popular in 1984: Gary Coleman. We're talking about Arnold from "Diff'rent Strokes" appearing in print, outdoor and POP ads celebrating the anniversary with the tag line, "After 25 years, some things are still fresh." The print ad, seen here, features a flannel-clad Coleman holding a cup of New York Fries. Creative resembles a campaign from last year called "Real Fries in a Fake World," where augmented women held authentic fries. There's also an augmented reality Facebook app where users must shake Coleman until he spills his fries. Players also receive a coupon for a cup of New York Fries at the 1984 price of $1.25. Did I mention that Coleman also tells fortunes? Once the fries are spilled, a Facebook friend is paired with a fry, and given an outlandish fortune dated 25 years in the future, such as your friend has become a "cruise ship lounge host," "tongue model" or "yoga historian." Zig created the campaign and Media Experts handled the media buy.



Steal someone's Wi-Fi, and you might find yourself picking up trash as part of your community service. It happened to one woman in an ad for Qwest. She trespasses, "borrows" Wi-Fi and learns from another worker that Qwest offers free Wi-Fi at numerous locales. As she enters a pensive state, our laborer gets pelted with a blue slushie. Watch it here. Another Wi-Fi thief ends up in the emergency room, following a run-in with multiple dogs and a cat that's still attached to his arm. See it here. Draftfcb Chicago created the ads.


Old Spice launched a trio of print ads and a handful of logo-less five-second TV spots for its invisible solid deodorant, Ever Clear. Print ads show men on the beach, in a sauna and on the basketball court, each hoping to impress an attractive woman nearby. None use Ever Clear, so they're branded as nasty chumps, idiots and stupid weirdos. Each insult is spelled out in white deodorant clumps that run from the hair in their armpits down their bodies. Gross. See the ads here, here and here. The five-second TV snippets are brand-less and logos-free; The URL is spelled out in the spots, with different voiceovers speaking the Web site name. See the spots here, here, here and here. I can tolerate crumbling deodorant bits in the TV ads. I can't tolerate the site's close-up of lodged, clumpy deodorant that talks back to me. Wieden + Kennedy Portland created the campaign.

The Milwaukee Police Department launched two TV spots that lead the viewer into thinking that something bad is going to happen -- but nothing does. A woman walks alone down a dark street. The hurried sound of her high-heel shoes makes you think someone might be following her. The ad has an unexpected happy ending as she reaches her car safely. "In some jobs, success is measured by what doesn't happen," closes the ad, seen here. A man wearing a hooded jacket paces through a convenience store. This can't be good. But it is. The man simply purchases a pack of cigarettes, pays and leaves. Watch it here. Print elements turn common tributes to crimes that have occurred into crimes that never happened. So a roadside memorial for a young girl reads, "Maddie Kuehn. Age 7. Not killed by a drunk driver May 3, 2009." See the ads here, here and here, created pro-bono by Cramer-Krasselt/Milwaukee.

Two men walk into a laundromat. One of them boldly approaches the other's laundry, grabs an article of clothing and inhales the scent of Downy Ultra. Too bad the man sniffed the other's boxers... before he washed them. Talk about a long-lasting scent. "Lavadero," a Spanish-language spot, launched last week on Telemundo, LATV and KMPX Dallas. Watch the ad here, created by Wing.



Support local farmers! Frito Lay launched a 3D installation in Chicago's Jackson Tunnel to illustrate that Lay's potatoes are locally grown. Life-sized potato plants appear to be growing through the roof of the tunnel. The installation launched July 27 and will last for three weeks. "Our potatoes are grown closer than you may think," says an ad placed near the overhead installation. See the ad here, created by Juniper Park.



Apple launched two iPhone demo ads last week that highlight a handful of useful Apps. The first ad, shown here, features travel Apps that help vacationers navigate Paris and send postcards home. In another spot, seen here, pictures and contact information are easily shared with friends and games of Scrabble are played. TBWA/Media Arts Lab created the campaign and handled the media buy.



These ads for Virgin Mobile prompt consumers to "Take Advantage" of the brand's flexibility and lack of an annual contract. The company spokesman, however, is mostly met with unexpected requests not pertaining to wireless coverage. One man demands that his free nighttime calling plan start at 7 p.m., rather than the standard 9 p.m. See it here. Another man wants a plasma TV for his daughter; a woman wants a puggle and a husband wants his wife to look like Britney Spears. Toy New York created the ads and MPG handled the media buy.


Random iPhone App of the week: Want to view the paintings located in The National Gallery? There's an App for that. Love Art features 250 paintings from the collection and 200 minutes of audio and video content, including interviews with National Gallery Director Dr Nicholas Penny, artist Maggie Hambling and author Tracy Chevalier. The App allows users to zoom in to see portrait details while twelve thematic galleries of paintings are grouped by popular themes, portraits, cityscapes and religious paintings. Love Art is available through the iTunes Store and was created in-house.

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