Out to Launch

Michelin launched a global ad campaign using the theme "The right tire changes everything." Bibendum, better known as the Michelin Man, fights an evil gas pump in an animated world. The gas pump sucks the money from people's wallets like a vacuum on steroids. Until the Michelin Man rolls into town. He throws tires from his belly at the evil gas pump, while educating drivers about using the right tires to reduce fuel consumption and extend tread life. Strangely, no one from OPEC was harmed. See the ad here. The worldwide effort kicked off stateside this week, followed by a gradual launch in 55 countries. Check out Michelin Man's Facebook page to see how he's evolved through the years. One constant: He's never joined a gym. TBWA/Chiat/Day, New York created the campaign.



Bring an open mind to this year's Vancouver International Film Festival, running through Oct. 16. The movie previews are rated "V" for Vancouver and forget parental discretion. An open mind is advised. A masked man holding a gun approaches a woman in a zebra mask. There's laughing, dancing and someone left injured in a deserted area. See it here. Another ad, seen here, begins with a couple getting frisky in the bedroom. "The following film may contain scenes of sexuality. Or scenes that make you question your own sexuality," says the voiceover. The couple is not alone, sharing the room with a second man, donkey and person dressed in a bear costume. Could it be David Letterman? The final ad mocks subtitles, and it's hilarious. The voiceover references subtitles that makes the viewer feel he's missing something, while a movie character spouts 10 seconds of dialogue -- only to have the translation be "maybe." Watch it here. TBWA/Vancouver created the ads, directed by Tim Godsall and edited by Geoff Hounsell.

Mohawk bowed "Frozen Moment" on HGTV, TLC and Lifetime, promoting its stain resistant SmartStrand carpets. Time stops in this 30-second spot, and viewers concurrently see numerous spills from the past, such as ice cream, salsa, guacamole and red juice. The spot ends with Mom cleaning the messes with ease. "Don't worry. It's SmartStrand," ends the ad, seen here. Let's hope it covers toxic oil spills, too. Cramer-Krasselt Milwaukee created the campaign and handled media planning and buying.

Get your Thanksgiving groove on. This TV ad for the Oregon State Lottery promotes its Thanksgiving Raffle with a rap video. The chance to win $1 million can make Grandma and her LeSabre and the uncle who wears turkey sweaters hip. And yes, the track, performed by Fatlip from the Pharcyde, can be downloaded for free at The ad takes a peak inside a winning family's home on Thanksgiving Day. There are numerous nods to the hip-hop world, like an uncle brushing powdered sugar off his shoulders, pouring gravy onto a plate like it was Champagne and a jiggling mold of Jell-O. My favorite line of the song? "Turn your little gravy boat into a crazy gravy yacht." Borders Perrin Norrander created the catchy ad.

The California Milk Processor Board launched an additional three ads starring rock star White Gold and promoting "Battle for Milkquarious," a 20-minute rock opera about milk. Yes, I watched the entire 20-minute opera. It wasn't half-bad. I've seen off-Broadway shows that were far worse. And there's a plot twist! Each ad is a preview of "Milkquarious," showing highlights from the rock opera. The first ad, seen here, touts the return of White Gold and his penchant for unicorn cows. The next ad introduces the opera characters, including Strawberry Summers, great hair and Bovina, the unicorn cow. Watch it here. White Gold is a man who's lost his milk and his girl in the final ad, seen here. It's like La Boheme without the consumption. Goodby, Silverstein and Partners created the campaign.

A trio of print ads for Bonobos men's pants, running in GQ, Maxim, NY Magazine, Wired, Atlantic Monthly and TheNew York Times Magazine, aims to change the way men buy pants. Read: just because the waist fits and the length looks good doesn't mean you're immune to being a victim of "diaper butt." Pictures of men from the waist down in Bonobos pants are paired with headlines such as: "Here's your chance to tell women, 'Hey, my eyes are up here.' " and "People will stare at your pants. Even when your fly isn't open." See the ads here, here and here, created by The Gate Worldwide.

Yellowbook launched two new ads in its ongoing "Yellowbook Moments" campaign. A couple returns from a costume party only to realize their house keys are missing. The man, dressed as a woman, jumps up and down, while his girlfriend looks through his cleavage in a failed attempt to find the keys. Their elderly neighbor, walking his dog, watches it all unfold. See it here. A woman taking a bath receives an unexpected surprise when she opens the faucet with her foot. Sludge. Lots of it. The best part? She's somehow oblivious and rather than turn the faucet off, her husband leaves to call a plumber. Watch it here. Gotham created the campaign and Ingenuity Media handled the media buy.

ASICS launched a community-based Web site that serves as a virtual running partner where runners can visit for advice, commentary and offer feedback to fellow athletes. Five running bloggers: The Motivator, The Gear Head, The Trainer, The Social Runner and The Mom, make up Blogs are updated weekly, and the site features tools to help runners customize their training. There is a database of events containing short and long-distance races, a running log and maps of runs, submitted by site users. All are mapped out, courtesy of Google Maps. The site was developed by vitrorobertson.

Random iPhone App of the week: Women's Health launched its first iPhone app called "Women's Health Workouts." The $1.99 application includes 16 workouts and 120 exercises from fitness experts and trainers. Each workout is explained through step-by-step instructions and pictures. The app also uses the iPhone OS 3.0 In App Purchase function, allowing users to purchase additional groups of workouts from within the app itself. Available expansion packs, such as, "Get a Flat Belly Fast," "Fat-Burning Yoga" and "Sculpt a Bikini-Ready Body" cost $0.99 at the App store.
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