Out to Launch
Wednesday, May 24, 2017
The original 'Wedding Crasher.' A chicken that poops popcorn? Let's launch!
  • In a series of amusing TV spots, Duracell positions itself as the battery you want when life gets dark or competitive. Do you really want to risk camping in the forest in the dark? Thought so.

    "Camping" is the latest 30-second spot to illustrate the many things that could go wrong in a dark forest. Aside from the nocturnal animals, a dead flashlight could lead to falling down a hill, onto a tent and over a campfire. A lifesaving puddle of mud next to a pig pen wraps up the not-so-perfect evening.

    The ad follows "Gaming," where a group of teens stay awake all weekend to play video games. Their bodies fail before Duracell.

    My personal favorite ad is "Ear Hair." A man with bushy ears trusts Duracell to operate the ear trimmer that will move the attention at a company presentation from his ears to his important slideshow.

    Wieden+Kennedy New York created the campaign, directed by Andreas Nilsson of Biscuit Filmworks.

  • I've never heard of The Kangaroo Generation, adults from 25 to 34 who still live with Mom and Dad. These "kids" don't leave the pouch, or home, until 100% confident in themselves.

    In Brazil, more kangaroos are staying at home, making for restless parents and a stagnant real estate market. ZAP, a real estate portal in Brazil, along with FCB Brasil, crafted the "Hint Books," a set of books for adult children that subtly drop hints to look for their own apartment.

    Books target three types of kangaroo adults: the ones who are waiting until they get married, the perpetual college student, and those who don't move out because they have no idea how to take care of themselves.

    The book titles are a riot. There's "Nobody Moved My Cheese – The advantages of living alone in a few steps: to the outside of your parents' house," "The Fault in our Studies – Books are doors to knowledge. And to the outside of your parents' house," and "The Secret of the Fitted Sheets – Why does the bed make up by itself? Why do the dishes disappear? Why do you still live with your parents? Solve those and other mysteries."

    The books offer advice about housekeeping, cooking and how to pay bills. Seriously. It's come to this? No idea how to pay bills and balance a budget? Visitors to www.zaphintbooks.com.br can select one of the books for free by mail or e-book version.

  • Public transportation gets a bad rap, so the Finnish National Railway company, known locally as "VR," decided to change consumer perception with a campaign that had nothing to do with trains and service.

    Looking to shed its vanilla reputation and currentize the Men of Rock statues that serve as advertising spokesmen, VR made sure that each of the four statues received KISS masks. Huge, 3-D KISS masks. Talk about going from 0 to 80 in six seconds.

    The stunt coincided with the iconic band playing in Helsinki a week after the masks went up. Naturally, the other men of rock visited the train station to see the masks and asked that the masks tour upcoming KISS expos worldwide.

    TBWA\Helsinki created the campaign.

  • Toyota vehicles are equipped with so many standard safety features that the reliable crash test dummies have become obsolete. The thrill-seeking dummies resort to finding alternate means to achieve adrenaline highs.

    The 90-second "New Gig" follows a crash test dummy as he recalls a time when he was in high demand, before Toyota's numerous standard safety features like lane departure alert and pedestrian detection. Nowadays, the dummy gets his rocks off by skydiving, being a CPR test dummy and moonlighting as a rodeo clown that charges the bull.

    "Overheard" illustrates that awkward moment when Toyota safety engineers casually mention that they won't need to use as many dummies anymore just as they walk by a room of dummies that are staving off boredom by knitting, working out and building a card castle.

    "Skydiver" shows the safety features in action just as a test dummy jumps out of an airplane. Adrenaline doesn't grow on trees.

    Saatchi & Saatchi Los Angeles created the campaign.

  • Dos Equis launched its latest spot starring the new "Most Interesting Man in the World," and it appears that he's the original "Wedding Crasher." Sorry, Luke and Vince.

    MIM makes a memorable wedding entrance when he actually crashes the wedding in a spacecraft. My favorite MIM tidbits include his "eye contact technically counts as a first date" and "If there's an elephant in the room, it's because he brought one."

    Havas New York created the ad, running through summer.

  • To celebrate its 80th anniversary, Sheraton Hotels & Resorts launched "Go Beyond," highlighting how far Sheraton associates will go for its customers.

    The debut ad features a fully clothed man diving into a body of water. His glasses come off, he collects his bearings and dives for something sinking. He's a Sheraton associate and he just rescued a young girl's stuffed animal. He is rewarded when the girl throws her bunny in the pool again. He's a hero who doesn't wear a cape.

    Side note: how about asking someone already in the pool to grab the bunny?

    Venables Bell & Partners created the campaign.

  • When a chicken eats corn, does it poop popcorn? If so, chicken needs to see a doctor. That's the gist of an ad for Aster Hospital, which encourages people suffering from heartburn to schedule a check-up with the hospital's GERD specialists.

    Corn is not your friend if you suffer from heartburn. The ad wants people to stop self-medicating and be examined by a doctor.

    Y&R Miami created the campaign.

  • Even at a young age, we eat first with our eyes, which can make or break a meal. Burger King France wants you to rediscover eating a meal because it tastes and looks good, not because you're hungry and you have to consume energy.

    There's shots of baby food that a kid won't touch, cafeteria slop, an overcooked dinner, a dare to eat a hot pepper and scorpion on a stick. What's not to love?

    The message: Burger King Whoppers are delicious, flame-broiled and look appetizing, if fast food is your thing. Buzzman created the campaign.

  • Buster Posey, catcher for the San Francisco Giants, gives pep talks to families who need them in a social media campaign for Esurance.

    An accompanying TV spot, "Buster's In Control," features the catcher shaking things up during the commercial shoot. Filming on a baseball field is too obvious. Posey opts for a beach vibe, a sidekick and theme song.

    The first pep talk helps a dad installing a car seat. He's frustrated, losing confidence, so, like any good catcher, Posey takes him to the side for a pep talk. The car seat is successfully installed and high-fives for everyone.

    The next confidence boost is for a teenager who just got his license and has trouble driving a stick shift.

    Mom is ready to throw in the towel until Posey emerges, telling the teen to work through the problem that's mainly in his head.

    Leo Burnett created the campaign.