The Cannes Film Festival is in full swing right now (May 16-27) and one of its special guests is one of our favorite pleasure-object producers: the high end Swedish design company, Lelo. They’re screening their very own short — okay, it’s a crummy commercial. But as with everything Lelo does, it’s beautiful, sleek, glamourous, luxurious and inviting — like their toys (although we never will get the appeal of squirming around on a bed of roses).
The highly anticipated season five premiere of Mad Men filled in the corners of the week’s zeitgeist that weren’t already occupied by the adoring fans (racist moviegoers notwithstanding) of THE HUNGER GAMES. In case you missed it, get caught up with Vanity Fair’s high-brow recap. There was also this remix of The Supremes’ “You Keep Me Hangin’ On” created by stitching the dialogue of the women from Mad Men. These sort of supercut remixes always makes me wonder how people had the time to do create these videos.
If you’re completely sick of all the coverage leading up to the Super Bowl, I’m here to provide you with some relief (9 out of 10 bloggers recommend it) with this week’s YouTube videos that seem to be gaining steam on the viral Internet train.
5. From the hilarious minds of one of my favorite channels on YouTube is this catchy and easy-to-sing song “Hapi Berth Dey.” It’s “about an Egyptian river god who finds a place to sleep atop two sheep” that also possibly doubles as an expression of his outrage of the misappropriation of copyright laws which legally also applies to a popular song traditionally sung to celebrate birthdays. Feel free to sing this new song coincidentally at your next birthday party!
Article: It's you, perfected!
There are many reasons not to read women’s magazines. One of the biggies? All the retouched photos. The genetic mutants we call models and celebrities can beat the shit out your average Jane’s self image, but Photoshop can chop it up with chainsaw. This before and after cover of Red Book from a few years ago thanks to Jezebel.com says it all. In fact, Jezebel has made one of their crusades exposing the evils of Photoshop (here’s their most recent “unveiling”). One of the funniest commentaries on how fucked up Photoshop is when it comes to setting impossible beauty standards is this recent parody of a beauty product commercial by Jesse Rosten on Vimeo: “Just one application of Fotoshop can give you results so dramatic, they’re almost unreal…istic.”
We’ve all had our share of dubious Facebook friend requests – that regrettable one night stand you’d almost succeeding in forgetting, your former therapist, your ex, your mom. But what about a Facebook request from your unborn child? A bunch of guys in Brazil were recently friend-requested by babies with their own name, plus the “Jr.” suffix. It turns out that these friend requests were actually from a condom company.
Article: Design your own pad
No, not an iPad — a menstrual pad. We were reading that article the other day about the big biz of vaginal products about how marketing and advertising industries aren’t shying away from female genitalia anymore, now that their target market has a million and one shameless blogs about the comings and goings of their vulvas. We mean, power to the punani and all! But that still doesn’t mean any vaginas out there need douching, no matter how hip the packaging or presentation…
Although famous actors don’t like to broadcast it, for one to protect their public image, they often go overseas to star in silly commercials, especially in Japan. Thanks to YouTube this is no longer a secret. In fact it was a plot device used in LOST IN TRANSLATION where Bill Murray’s character “Bob Harris” finds…
Article: Love Your Vagina the green way
Mooncup, the UK-based (but internationally distributed) menstrual cup, just released an old-fashioned song on YouTube called “Love Your Vagina.” They asked women to submit nicknames for their genitalia and have amassed an overwhelming list, from which the best terms were taken to make this catchy song. (Get the sheet music and lyrics here; and if you buy the song on iTunes, proceeds will go to a charity chosen by their Facebook fans). Of course the song includes many nicknames for body parts other than the vagina (a.k.a. “bouncing baby escape hatch”), like the clitoris (“little man in a canoe”), the labia (“peachy lips”), the vulva (“downtown dining and entertainment district”). As long as people know the difference, then we guess we can get behind the casual mixing and matching of terms of endearment for various anatomical parts in the same genital neighborhood if that mixing and matching ultimately encourages positive body image. So yay for secret little honey pots everywhere!
Article: Origins of I Heart New York
I sat down with Milton Glaser last week. Not only am I working with Milton at my day job, I also recorded our conversation for Dwell too. Meeting legends typically don’t phase me. I’ve met them all from design icons to rock gods. But Milton is the quintessential New Yorker. It was quite a joyous event for me. The below statement about “I Love New York/I Heart New York” was particularly fascinating for me as he not only explained it’s design inspiration, something I’d never heard, but also explained how ubiquitous the statement had become. It’s a fun read:
I am sure you have answered this about a million times, but I have to ask about “I Love New York” or “I Heart New York.” I don’t even know what to call it! Love or heart?
What you may not realize that is that the heart, a symbol used as a verb, has now entered into the Oxford English Dictionary. This happened a couple of weeks ago. So heart is now a verb. It entered with an acknowledgement that “I Love New York” was the manifestation that did it, the first symbol ever to enter the Oxford Dictionary. You can call it either one as both are correct.
Article: Hovering art directors
A hilarious website devoted to the fine art of art directors standing behind and monitoring the efforts of their design minions: Hovering Art Directors. [Via]
The 21st century’s answer to the skywriting marriage proposal is turning out to be the movie theater trailer proposal, with production values and costs ever increasing. In 2008, there was the simple surprise by the nerdy boyfriend, followed by the more complicated yet similarly unwatchable airplane disaster trailer that same year, and the open love letter with the ear-shattering Kenny-G soundtrack in 2009 (here’s the in-theater reaction).
I’m not sure who first originally wrote this, but it’s quite hysterical. It’s particularly funny (and so true!) to anyone who’s worked in advertising, but a lot of it applies to many industries. Without further ado: How many people in an ad agency does it take to change a lightbulb?
How many copywriters does it take to change a lightbulb?
Change? I’m not changing anything.
How many art directors does it take to change a lightbulb?
Does it have to be a lightbulb?
How many creative directors does it take to change a lightbulb?
You sort it out. I’m late for my plane.
Article: New season of Craigslist TV
A few weeks ago, Craigslist TV (on YouTube) launched their second season of mini-documentaries based on real Craigslist ads. (Watch the trailer for the series here.) If you think reading the ads is great entertainment for inducing second-hand embarrassment, try watching them. There’s “Charity’s Casting Call for a Husband” and “Hollywood Superheroes Unite” and “Michael…
Article: Where's the bike shop?
A Reuters photographer snapped this photo of co-owner Christian Petersen peering out the window of his awesomely decorated bicycle shop located in Altlandsberg, Germany. In case you’re wondering, there are about 120 bikes mounted on the building. [Via]
The Tumblr blog Bitter Buffalo said it best: “What’s this? An anti-rape campaign that focuses on preventing rape instead of preventing women leaving the house? Holy crap it’s Christmas.” This campaign is from Men Can Stop Rape, an international organization founded in 1997 to mobilize male youth to prevent men’s violence against women by providing…
He captured our hearts this past winter with his first breakthrough ad that had him going from shower to ship to white steed all in one take. At the end of June, he was back with another ingeniously absurd one-shot commercial, an awesome upping of the stakes of the first (log rolling? check! jacuzzi busting? check! flying? check!). And just last week, Old Spice Guy launched 183 — yes, 183! — individual video responses (all available on YouTube) to various Tweets he’d received from both big names and no names alike (e.g. Ellen DeGeneres, Starbucks, Alyssa Milano, Huffington Post, George Stephanopoulos, Demi Moore, Gillette, the list goes on and on and on). In just three days, the series had received 11 million views! The marketing agency Wieden + Kennedy has created a perfect storm of viral media for Proctor & Gamble using a beloved character (played superbly by Isaiah Mustafa), humor, interactivity and social networks. It’s hard to get worked up over being manipulated into giving away free advertising for a major corporation when it’s so damn entertaining!
Article: Fun theory: the slide
I previously mentioned in these pages an ad campaign from Volkswagen centered around the “fun theory” which hacks urban environments to inject a youthful sense of fun. Their latest (awesome) effort borrows an idea from the playground and gives commuters an alternative and faster means of getting down the subway stairs.
The German ad agency Butter recently released a series of award-winning print ads — “Pin-Up Calendar 2010″ — for Eizo, a medical supply company which apparently specializes in medical imaging. While it effectively shows the quality of their radiographs, it also entertainingly pokes fun at the whole porn genre: You can see everything! Check out…
Trojan Fire & Ice – Kinda Like a Thrill Ride from Raymond Forbes on Vimeo. We just saw this awesome condom TV commercial from Trojan the other day. We’re not necessarily endorsing the product, just the ad. First of all, the tagline “You can’t wait to get it on”? Genius. How has this not been…
Article: The Google job experiment
Wanting a change to a creative advertising firm, which is often a highly competitive process, 28-year-old copywriter Alec Brownstein showed social media and marketing “experts” how to really leverage the power of the Internet along with some good old fashion psychology. While researching his favorite creative directors on Google, Brownstein noticed that there was no sponsored ad links (which appear at the top of the search results) attached to their names. If these directors were like the rest of us narcissists, he assumed they Googled themselves.
Article: Adam extra long condom ads
At first we were tickled by these quirky ads for India’s Adam Extra Long Condoms by the world’s third largest ad agency Publicis. The illustrations are cool, and they obviously have a sense of humor. But take a look at the details, and things get creepy. Why do all the women look either surprised, or in pain, or, in the case of the pool lady, in the process of saying “Stop!” (note the Heisman hand). In the restaurant one, you’ve got a mouse pretty much date-raping a passed-out cat. In the tree one, an unsuspecting goat is about to get violated by a hopeful dog. And back at the pool, there’s a poor frog checking out his micro-ween. Add to that the extra insecurity this will only heap upon average (and below) guys, and the ads leave you feeling like they’re all part of a bad dream. Silly, yes, and a little bit sinister. (You can check out the larger images at I Believe in Adv — double click them there.)
Article: The best period commercial, period
We saw this fantastic ad for a new line of period products called U from Kotex while we were watching American Idol the other day. (We can admit this viewing habit without shame because in the same week we watched the 13-and-a-half-hour, black-and-white German film “White Ribbon,” which pretty much balances things out.) Anyway, the commercial makes fun of all the stupid things most period product ads employ — beach scenes, slo mo, white spandex, blue liquid. So we did some more investigative work, and found two other awesome spots (heh heh) from U: in one, respondents taking a Rorschach Test do everything in their power to avoid saying “vulva” or “vagina”; in the other, a clueless boyfriend tries to get help in the feminine protection aisle (the lady who says “It’s a man’s world” is our new hero!). We’re not convinced the hip packaging will make menstrual products seem cool, but we’re sold on U’s marketing mission: helping girls (and society) get over their embarrassment and squeamishness about something so normal and natural — and that’s not just periods, but anatomy too.
The slogan for the above anti-smoking ad currently running in France reads “Smoking means being a slave to tobacco.” Despite promoting a universally recognized good cause — getting kids to stop smoking — the ad has managed to piss off pretty much everyone. And this is in France, where the words “sex” and “scandal” (or, rather, their French equivalents) rarely appear in newspaper headlines together.
Article: The Man Your Man Could Smell Like
We usually breeze through the commercials on Tivo, but somehow caught this new Old Spice ad during a recent “Lost” recording. So glad we did, because it’s genius. This one — count ‘em, one — shot took three days to nail. If you look carefully, there really isn’t much computer manipulation (save for the bottle erupting out of the overflowing diamonds). And that’s actor’s real voice! Don’t believe us? Check out this Twit interview with the creators of the ad for the play-by-play of how they did it.
Article: The Puma Hardchorus
“They want to be in your arms. You want to be in the stands. What do you do when Valentine’s Day falls on game day?” That’s the tagline for Puma’s genius ad campaign, The Puma Hardchorus, which allows hardcore soccer fans to dedicate and send a video of Savage Garden’s 1997 song “Truly Madly Deeply”…