Commentary

Out to Launch

1John Jameson would do anything to save his famous Irish whiskey from the great fire of 1789. When a sensible plan fails to pan out, Jameson takes extreme measures and opens a dam, covering the town with raging waters. "In the end, the not-so brilliant plan saved the whiskey. And all of Ireland agreed: catastrophe averted," closes "Fire," seen here. TBWA/Chiat/Day New York created the ad for Jameson Irish Whiskey. Noam Murro directed it. 

1Virgin Mobile brings crazy front and center with a pair of TV ads promoting the LG Optimus V, coupled with a $25 unlimited data plan. The ads show a woman who goes a tad overboard with staying connected to the man she's dating. And by overboard, I mean stalking and breaking and entering. In "First Date," a woman stalks her date from high above a tree, watching him read inside his apartment. To pass the time, she can check his Flickr stream and compare herself to his exes and send pictures to her mother. Watch it here. The same woman wonders why her date hasn't responded to the countless text messages sent. She knows he's home, for she's hiding in his closet and about to check-in via Foursquare. See the ad here. Mother created the campaign.

1How would you react if a sumo wrestler was inside your garage, leaning against your car? If you own a 2011 Subaru Forester, this sexy scene comes standard. Subaru first introduced viewers to sexy sumo wrestlers back in 2008. They're back in 2011, and they go where you go. Having a romantic moment with your girlfriend can be difficult when a wrestler's butt is in your line of vision. Park your Forrester in a no-parking zone? You'll probably get a ticket, but don't leave the ticket between the wrestler's legs. He doesn't like that. He does, however, enjoy car wash baths... in slow motion. "With the new Japanese-engineered Subaru Forester, sexy comes standard," says the voiceover. Watch the ad here, created by DDB Toronto.OMD handled the media buy.

1New York Presbyterian Hospital is running a phenomenal TV campaign, dubbed "Amazing Stories," featuring recovered patients, in their own words, describing the care they received by hospital doctors and staff. One patient that stood out for me was Matt Long. I recently purchased his book, "The Long Run," and recognized him immediately. Long is a New York City firefighter and marathon runner who was biking to work during the 2005 transit strike when he was hit by a bus. He tells two separate stories. The first ad praises his nurse, who came to work on her day off to make sure Long's dressings were properly changed. See it here. The second ad floored me. An orthopedic surgeon was called to the hospital to care for Long. He was unable to get past a certain street, because he was traveling alone and a minimum of four people was needed. The doctor drove back home and put his two kids and pregnant wife, who was on bed rest, into the car, so he could get to the hospital. Incredible. Watch it here. Munn Rabot, New York created the campaign, edited by wild(child).

1The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority launched "Tough Questions," the latest ad in its ongoing "What happens here, stays here," campaign. In it, a dad seamlessly explains to his young daughter how babies are made, using a stuffed rabbit and whale as props. When the youngster asks why adults like to visit Las Vegas, the father becomes a bumbling mess, deferring the hard question to mommy. See the ad here, created by R&R Partners.

1Snapple doesn't need bells and whistles attached to its bottles to prove that it's extraordinary; using green tea, black tea and real sugar does the trick. A factory manager notices a number of Snapple bottles on the assembly line are equipped with gadgets: moving feet, bells, confetti and lights. He confronts a pair of assembly workers (very reminiscent of "Laverne and Shirley's" opening scene) and informs them that Snapple doesn't need outer accoutrements to make it better. Watch the ad here, created by Deutsch LA.

1A woman is one scratch away from buying the coveted necklace she dreams of in a TV ad for Colorado Lottery's Cool Millions game. Perhaps if she wins the voices will stop. The woman marches into a jewelry store, right up to her favorite piece of expensive jewelry. It talks back to her, and encourages her to scratch her lotto ticket inside the store, while wearing the piece of talking jewelry. As the voiceover states: "With three chances to win an instant million dollars, your wish list might start coming to life." See the ad here, created by Cactus, Denver.

1I'm resurrecting an old Web film from last year that continues to amuse me. Land Rover launched "Sword Collector" to promote the safety drivers and passengers will experience inside a LR4. The kicker is, you don't need to be driving the LR4 to feel safe. A man brings his sword-collecting co-worker outside. Carrying a sword in his belt, the collector asks: "is this about my swords?" It's not until the co-worker sits safely inside his Land Rover that he tells his colleague: "I lied. It is about the swords, actually. HR says they all have to go." "You'll feel safe inside," closes the film, seen here and created by Young & Rubicam New York

1Random iPhone and Android App of the week: The Watsons created an app for the New York City Health Department called the NYC Condom Finder. The app uses a smartphone's GPS system to locate venues distributing free NYC condoms with packaging selected by fans. The app also provides information about the NYC Condom program and a "dos and don'ts" for condom usage. The free app is available in the App store and Android store.

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