Out to Launch

Men in diapers. George Washington could have used a GPS device. The Globetrotters are coming to town. Let's launch!

The Air Force launched a TV, online and print campaign that successfully instilled fear into me. Using a new slogan, "Above All," the campaign describes the negative way the world has changed and how the Air Force protects us. An aerial view of the Pentagon is shown in "Cyberspace." "This building will be attacked three million times today. Who is going to protect it?" asks a voiceover as a shot of Air Force cyberwarriors are seen protecting the building from cyber terrorism. "It takes Air Force technology to defend America in a changing world," continues the ad. Hide now. See the ad here. Print ads are equally alarming, featuring hypothetical news headlines such as "News about a rogue leader making threats could go here" alongside Air Force copy stating, "We can't predict tomorrow's headlines. We can be ready for them." Maybe I'd feel better if they said they would try to prevent these headlines, rather than be ready for them. See the ads here, here and here. GSD&M Idea City created the campaign and handled the media buy.



Here's another scary thought: that some people believe the Holocaust didn't happen. Hillel Colorado ran a print ad in local newspapers and as a wildposting to raise awareness for Holocaust Awareness Week, Feb. 25-28. The ad shows the autobiographical book "The Diary of Anne Frank" incorrectly labeled as a work of fiction. Copy at the bottom of the ad reads, "Millions of Americans don't believe there was a Holocaust." See the ad here. TDA Advertising & Design created the campaign.

SCREAM TV, a Canadian station devoted entirely to scary movies and TV shows, aired a TV spot once, posted it online, and answered the question "Why do grown men wear diapers?" Men are shown running around a house, acting like little kids. The ad plays out much like a children's diaper commercial, emphasizing the diapers' absorbency. Then comes the twist: The men wear diapers so they can watch SCREAM TV and get the crap scared out of them. See the ad here, created by zig.

Apple always knows what catchy song to use in its TV spots. Its latest ad for the iPod Touch is no exception. "What I'm Looking For" by Brendan Benson plays as a trigger finger searches for variety on an iPod Touch. Music, movies, email and pictures are only a handful of actions the finger partakes in. Watch the ad here. TBWA/Media Arts Lab created the campaign and handled the media buy.

I like the concept of this campaign for GPS provider Mio-Tech USA, but the execution could use some direction. "Behind Every Great Explorer is a Great Navigator" shows George Washington steering a course through the Delaware River, using his GPS system to navigate a seamless route. Were Lewis and Clark or Columbus unavailable? Astronauts explore the moon with additional help in another ad. Rich-media banner ads are running on assorted technology Web sites. See the ads here, here, here and here. Cole & Weber United created the campaign and Maxus handled the media buy.

Nike launched "LeBron: The Complete Story," a Web site supporting LeBron's new shoe, the Zoom LeBron V. The microsite follows the journey of LeBron James from a young basketball player in Akron Ohio, to becoming a member of the 2008 Olympic team. This explains why the site is housed on the Nike China site, complete with subtitles. Video documentaries, photography and a shoe gallery aptly showcase James' competitive side, especially as related to the upcoming Olympics. The site was additionally supported by a three-phase online ad campaign stateside. AKQA created the site.

The Harlem Globetrotters launched "Magic As Ever," a TV, print, radio, online and outdoor campaign promoting the team's 2008 World Tour. A doting dad in full Globetrotter gear poorly emulates the Globetrotters in "Driveway." See it here. "Spoken Word" highlights the Globetrotters' impressive on-court ball-handling skills. Watch the ad here. Print ads, running in Kiwanis and Sports Illustrated for Kids, introduce fans to individual players. See the ads here and here. WONGDOODY created the campaign and media buying was handled in-house.

Nike ran a print ad in the February 29 edition of the New York Times that celebrated Black History Month. "Honor those who stepped forward when others were thinking backward," reads the ad, in the shape of a shoe print. Click here to see the ad. Wieden+Kennedy Portland created the campaign and handled the media buy.

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