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Boost Mobile, 180LA Say ‘You Earned It’

After their amusing spot featuring a basketball player juggling a couple of extra balls, Boost Mobile and 180LA are back together once again, this time emphasizing the savings Boost customers can get. In three short videos, we see various stealing scenarios: a man on the subway gets pickpocketed, a city guy leaps over fences to evade a mugger, a woman has her purse snatched on the sidewalk. But by the end of each ad, the victim has money handed back to them, showing that “Boost Mobile puts cash back in your pocket, literally.”

It’s a good concept, and the little song that shifts each scene into celebration coupled with the actors’ yay-I’m-richer-than-I-thought smiles makes these spots sweet. I only wish they could have cast at least one white thief. Sure, they’re all good guys in the end, but these spots still reinforce tired racial stereotypes. We can do better.

Credits and the rest of the videos after the jump.

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Boost Mobile Sports the Junk Dunk

In light of the “no homo” press conference from Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert, this new Boost Mobile basketball spot from 180LA may strike some sensitive nerves. However, the humor is handled with enough subtlety to tiptoe around accusations of offensiveness. There’s also a really well-timed nuts joke that might make you chuckle if you are into such sectors of comedy.

In the commercial, one unlucky defender gets posterized on in a pick-up basketball game, and to make things worse, his face gets an up-close view of the sweaty dunker’s crotch. For those who aren’t basketball aficionados, there was actually a name for such a move – balls on your head – that became popular in the 1990s when young NBA players like Darius Miles would dunk on a guy. After the dunk, the player would run down the court celebrating like this (I’m not making this up). Whether Boost Mobile knows it or not, they are bringing back forgotten basketball treasure. The commercial is probably making some subconscious statement about the intersection of black, gay, and youth cultures, but as a consumer product, it’s really just funny. You see, Tyler, the Creator, it’s possible to make an effective ad without relying on stereotypes. Credits after the jump.

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180LA Adds Duering, Corbitt as CDs

We guess you can just call 180LA even steven. A minute after  losing creative directors Grant Holland and Gavin Milner to 72andSunny, the 180 camp has brought on longtime creative duo Anja Duering and Carl Corbitt in the same roles. The latter pair joins 180LA from fellow SoCal operation Goodness Mfg, where they spent the last two years as CDs. Duering and Corbitt’s history dates back to mid-aughts when they served as VP/ACDs at CP+B, helping manage creative teams on accounts including Best Buy (Geek Squad, specifically) and VW. The duo’s professional travels have also taken them to W+K Amsterdam, where they served as creative directors on the global Nokia account.

Now at 180LA, Duering and Corbitt, whose specialties lie in art directing and copywriting, respectively, will work on accounts including Boost Mobile and Mitsubishi.

 

Asics, 180 Amsterdam Slow to Finish Line with Exercise App

With the new “MY ASICS” training app, runners can log workout times, post motivational content to Facebook, and create a comprehensive exercise diary. There are digital timelines and unlockable articles, videos, pictures, and all this is great for athletes who are in need of a capable app. However, in 2013, this type of technology isn’t new. Although the design may be slicker than similar apps, “MY ASICS” could struggle to have an impact in a field where RunKeeper and MapMyRun have already been go-to social exercise platforms for the past few years.

The app is the latest addition to the “Journey of Improvement” campaign, and if it catches on, you’ll be able to scroll through your newsfeed and ridicule all the people sharing their running times and making you hate yourself for watching The Big Bang Theory instead of improving your cardiovascular health. Maybe, just maybe, it will force you to go for a jog and buy ASICS sneakers. Then, you can continue the cycle by downloading the app and posting your own workouts to Facebook. Then someone else can secretly despise you and start jogging. People helping people, it’s a beautiful thing.

Asics Wants You To Beat Yourself

Competitively, not abusively. The Asics “Better Your Best” campaign created by 180 Amsterdam asks you to embrace the athletic quest for self-improvement that usually disappears from New Year’s resolution lists by mid-January. It’s encroaching on that “My Better is Better than Your Better” Nike sentiment from years past, but not enough to warrant the benign fury of the commenters. Winning against yourself is always less messy than whooping on others.

The commercial’s message can only be described as marathon running sessions inspired by zombie apocalypses inspired by Memento. However, the problem with bettering your best in a race against yourself is that you always lose–probably a fallacy Asics doesn’t want you to think about if you like the glass half-empty. Still, a viscerally powerful spot worth watching.

On a side note: there are six short films where international athletes like tennis player Gael Monfils and volleyballer Dragan Travica discuss ways they focus on continuously improving at their respective sports, but these don’t add much to the campaign. They’re full of athlete-speak cliches we’ve all heard a thousand times too many. Asics and 180 can still better their better for next time. Credits and one of the shorts after the jump.

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Derrick Rose Returns From Injury in Adidas Spot

Though they struggled through injury during most of the 2011-12 NBA season, the Chicago Bulls had a very positive outlook at the beginning of the post-season in late April. After all, the team’s star and best player, Derrick Rose, had just returned to the team after a series of afflictions had kept him sidelined for a good chunk of the year. Rose was looking in prime condition, and the Bulls had the NBA Championship in their sights.

But, we all know what happened next. With the Bulls comfortably ahead of the 76ers in the waning minutes of their first playoff game, Rose went down with a season-ending ACL tear. Some blamed Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau for leaving his star in the game too long. Some blamed Rose himself for taking too many risks while still recovering from injury. Some, like Nike designer Jason Petrie, famously blamed Rose’s choice of shoe sponsor for the injury. (#shouldasignedwithNike) In any case, as the following photo shows, it was very, very sad.

But, Adidas is getting everyone’s hopes with a new spot from (we think) from 180 LA Caviar and director (not to mention 180LA alum) Amir Farhang. “The Return of Derrick Rose” helps confirm what some are reporting: D-Rose’s rehabilitation is ahead of schedule. With Chicago’s “bench mob” broken up by trades, we’ll need Derrick Rose for as much as possible if we hope to make it to the playoffs. Without him, there’s basically no chance in hell for this team. It’s the truth, and hopefully, Adidas is being honest with us as well.

Oh, and in case you’re wondering, #thereturn is currently blowing up on the Twitterz. Production credits after the jump.

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Y&R NY’s Graeme Hall Heads Back to Europe

After spending the last three years Stateside as a creative director/senior copywriter at Y&R New York, Graeme Hall is heading back to Europe and joining up with the creative team at 180 Amsterdam as a CD. During his time at Y&R, Hall served as CD on Virgin Atlantic and helped lead creative on a variety of other accounts including PETA (you might remember the recent “Agents in the Wild” effort), VH1, Land Rover and Airwalk (his “Invisible Pop Up Store” for the last earned him a Webby and Yellow Pencil).

According to a statement from 180 Amsterdam managing partner/ECD Al Moseley, Hall will serve as CD on various projects “across all our business, create his own work, and mentor teams. He’s going to be busy.” Prior to heading to the U.S. and joining Y&R, Hall spent five years at DDB London, where he worked as a creative on campaigns for Harvey Nichols, Marmite and various projects for VW.

We’ve been told he officially starts at 180 Amsterdam tomorrow.

 

 

 

DHL Delivers Manchester United Stars to the World

One of the biggest benefits of sponsoring what is arguably the world’s most famous professional sports teams is being able to use its likeness in advertising. While logistics company DHL isn’t Manchester United’s main partner (insurance company AON is actually what takes up the most space on the team’s jerseys), a new campaign from 180 Amsterdam that continues the brand’s “Speed of Yellow” mantra finds Man U stars wearing slightly altered uniforms.

180 Amsterdam ECD Al Moseley says in a statement that the spot for DHL is, “Not another celebration of a sponsorship but a demonstration of a true partnership between global brands.” As a flying ball of yellow energy travels across continents, from London to Tokyo to Dubai to Rio de Janeiro, it soars near Man U’s biggest stars including Wayne Rooney, Ryan Giggs, Nemanja Vidić, Park Ji-Sung,Chicharito’ and coach Sir Alex Ferguson.

A second spot that sheds (bright yellow) light on DHL’s various partnerships features the brand’s speed of delivery racing Formula 1 drivers. And, just like the first, it’s scored with DHL’s theme, “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough.” So, how do you think this compares to UPS’ recent logistics TV spots? Credits, and that terrible “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” sing-a-long from the 1998 Susan Sarandon/Julia Roberts comedy Stepmom for your immediate gratification after the jump.

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180 Plays Host Once Again to Portfolio Night LA

Four years after first serving as city host for the Los Angeles installment of Portfolio Night, which in essence is a speed-recruiting/networking event for young art directors, copywriters and designers, 180LA is back in the mix yet again. In the 2008 version, the agency fulfilled its promise that whoever presented the best portfolio that evening would be offered a full-time gig immediately (this is guy they chose).

In the video above, 180LA ECD William Gelner explains that with the economic downturn in the ensuing years after their first Portfolio Night collab, such an opportunity won’t come so easy nowadays. But he does have a solution, which reminds us somewhat of the intern-firing ploy pulled by San Francisco shop Mortar. Anyhow, the 180-hosted Portfolio Night 10 Los Angeles takes place on May 23. Get ticket info here.

180 Appoints Allen to Global CEO Post

180 has made some changes to its global management structure as the agency network has now tapped Michael Allen, who has spent the last five years as managing partner/president of its Los Angeles office, to take on the big gig of global CEO. Allen joined 180 from sister Omnicom operation TBWA\Chiat\Day LA at the beginning of 2007, helping the former  grow from a staff of four to an 85-strong operation that counts clients including Adidas, Sony Electronics, Boost Mobile and Mitsubishi.

Despite Allen’s move up the ladder, 180 founder Chris Mendola will remain on board and lead the agency as chairman. Allen, meanwhile, will continue overseeing day-to-day in LA while also handling the responsibilities that come with his new appointment. Along with Mendola and Allen, 180′s global management team includes Amsterdam president Kevin Dundas, Amsterdam ECD Al Moseley, as well as LA ECD William Gelner and head of production, Peter Cline.

 

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