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BBDO NY Taps NBA Greats for Foot Locker

BBDO New York taps Houston Rockets star James Harden and retired NBA greats Charles Barkley and Scottie Pippen for a funny new spot entitled “Short Memory,” which promises to be the first in a series.

When Harden asks Barkley for advice on starting the new season fresh, Barkley explains that all the greats have short memories. Harden asks if that means Barkley forgot about it if he had a bad game, to which Barkley replies that he never had a bad game. Harden persists with a series of questions, until Barkley cuts him off, seeing that he doesn’t get it, and turns to Scottie Pippen for help. Pippen perfectly encapsulates Barkley’s point, declaring himself the greatest Chicago Bull ever — which would be true with a parenthetical “(available for selection in NBA Jam).”

It’s a clever spot, making good use of Barkley’s comedic potential, even if Harden comes across a bit stiff in comparison. Pippen’s tongue-in-cheek boast alone gives “Short Memory” viral potential, which the spot already seems to be fulfilling. It has racked up almost 600,000 views since being posted yesterday. Stick around for credits after the jump. Read more

GSD&M Talks Protection for Radio Shack

GSD&M has a new back-to-school campaign for Radio Shack that makes good use of awkward humor to promote the brand’s protection plans.

In “The Talk” for example, a dad tells his son it’s time they had “the talk.” His son, horrified, listens as his father emphasizes the need to use protection. “I know you just want to get out and show it off, but you can’t just go swinging it around all willy-nilly trying to impress the girls.” He continues, “This glass is fragile. We’re covered though…” as the son looks greatly relieved. The spot’s use of innuendo in an awkward, easy to relate to situation makes it funny and memorable.

In the similarly suggestive “Laundry,” the tables are turned, and it’s the father who is made to feel awkward. We’ve included that spot, along with credits, after the jump. Read more

DDB Examines Downside to Self-Driving Cars for Centraal Beheer Achmea

DDB & Tribal Worldwide, Amsterdam tackles the issue of self-driving cars in their latest spot for Dutch insurance company Centraal Beheer Achmea.

The spot at first appears to be a promo for the self-driving car, but while the voiceover extolls the virtues of the technological innovations it leads to all kinds of disastrous accidents as people are distracted by the site of seeing a car with no driver. DDB’s spot crams a lot of slapstick into its 60 seconds, leading into the brand’s “Just Call Us” tagline.

Apparently the spot was correct in its assumption that a self-driving car would function as a large distraction to other drivers and passers-by. “The self-driving car is a hot topic at the moment and we saw it as a great opportunity for Centraal Beheer Achmea’s car insurance,” said Pol Hoenderboom, creative director at DDB & Tribal Worldwide. “Our own ‘self-driving car,’ by the way, did not survive the shoot unscathed. A local driver was so distracted by the situation that he drove straight into our ‘TV ad hero’ car parked on the location.” Stick around for credits after the jump. Read more

TBWA Hunt Lascaris Encourages Youth Travel for Student Flights

TBWA Hunt Lascaris has a new campaign for Student Flights promoting youth travel with the message, “Travel Before it’s Not Fun Anymore.”

The campaign features two funny spots showing grandparents out of their element in more youth-friendly travel destinations: Bangkok and Amsterdam. In “Grandpa,” featured above, an elderly man somehow finds himself at a Thai strip club. He incredulously (and suggestively) holds a ping pong ball, while uncomfortably sizing up his surroundings. The spot manages to do a lot with a little, finding humor in its suggestive content and the perfect expression on the man’s face.

Perhaps even more effective is “Grandma,”  which manages the same accomplishment. It shows a grandmother in an Amsterdam coffee house, who is very clearly stoned out of her mind (which has probably worked wonders for her rheumatoid arthritis). The situation makes for a really funny 30-second spot, despite a complete lack of dialogue and little going on aside from the grandmother. Stick around for “Grandma” and credits after the jump. Read more

The Vault Taps Dante Exum for Foot Locker

The Vault tapped NBA Draft prospect Dante Exum for a humorous new Foot Locker campaign.

The series of 15 second spots, entitled “Everything Changes After the Draft” highlight how things don’t change after the draft. Although Exum seems to perceive himself as a celebrity, it’s evident no one else does. The approach works best on the above “Paparazzi,” in which Exum informs friends that he doesn’t want to head to Foot Locker because “paparazzi might be there,” eliciting uncontrollable laughter from his two buddies. Other spots in the campaign take a similar approach, seeing Exum practicing his autograph, interacting with a dorky neighbor, combing through “fan mail” and making a dinner reservation. We’ve included “Reservation” and “Fan Mail,” along with credits, after the jump. Read more

DDB Toronto Targets ‘Junkface’ for Neutrogena

DDB Toronto has a new campaign for Neutrogena discouraging men from washing their junk and their face with the same soap (and offering up Neutrogena Men Face Wash as the perfect solution).

As Adweek points out, the Canadian campaign “assumes that men start low and move up in the shower,” a somewhat dubious assumption. Still, the 60-second spot is not without its (heavily influenced by W+K’s Old Spice) charm. While “Junkface” explains the cause of Junkface, there is little description of the symptoms, although we can reasonably assume they include junk particles in the facial region.

The goofy humor continues on www.stopjunkface.com, which contends that 72% of Canadians have junkface, with Alberta having the most Junkface sufferers at 86%. Men with chinstraps are especially prone to Junkface, and all bounty hunters suffer from it. The site also offers the important reminder to keep knees, owls, and footballs away from your nether regions. No word yet on whether Neutrogena plans to offer a separate line of soap for your junk.

Read more

W+K, Three Apologize for ‘Holiday Spam’

Wieden+Kennedy have a clever new spot for U.K.-based mobile provider Three, in which the company makes a timely apology.

The 60-second spot sees Three apologize for the rash of “holiday spam” resulting from the company allowing users to utilize their phone in 16 worldwide destinations without any extra cost for calls. texts or data. Three “thought this was a good thing,” but “failed to consider the consequences: the holiday spam,” says a contrite Three representative. It’s a clever approach, employing dry British humor to let Three brag about their coverage while leveraging a cultural phenomenon anyone can relate to. “Holiday Spam” also manages to be memorable without spending much money (it’s basically just one actor and a series of backgrounds). At the conclusion of the spot, viewers are prompted to visit the campaign landing site at stopholidayspam.com, which includes a heat map of spam levels in various locations. The campaign is also supported by the #holidayspam hashtag, a pretty seamless social integration.

A Vulgar Elizabeth Hurley Stars in Droga5′s ‘If We Won’ for Newcastle

Elizabeth Hurley gets vulgar in the latest addition to Droga5′s “If We Won” campaign for Newcastle, which imagines how much better America would be if Great Britain had won the Revolutionary War.

The campaign kicked off last week, with a humorous spot featuring Stephen Merchant. Hurley’s spot borrows a bit from that one, as it devotes quite a bit of time to how many great curse words we’d have at our disposal had we remained British, something Merchant touched on in the original “If We Won.” Still, we suppose the subject doesn’t hurt from further exploration, and the video has over 300,000 views since being uploaded earlier today as people seem to be amused by seeing Hurley stringing together British expletives. Hurley’s 39-second video is just part of the wealth of material put out by Droga5 for the campaign, which also includes Zachary Quinto in a pair of spots and a second appearance from Merchant, who explains how his British accent helps him appear intelligent and get laid. If you’re wondering what American actor Zachary Quinto is doing in this campaign, you’ll just have to watch the video, along with the second Merchant spot, after the jump. Read more

McCann NY Takes Unique Approach to Gun Safety PSA

You might not associate a sex toy battle with gun safety, but McCann New York ties the two together in a new 30-second video entitled “Playthings” that (finally) takes a different approach to the familiar gun safety PSA, created for gun responsibility organization Evolve.

In the spot, a woman goes to pick up her son at a friend’s house and finds him locked in heated sex toy battle with his friend. The friend’s mother, of course, looks horrified, and just when you thought things couldn’t get any more awkward one of the kids turns on the vibration feature. Around this time the voiceover intones the message, “If they find it, they’ll play with it. So always lock up your guns.”

The humorous approach is a welcome departure from the typical gun safety PSAs — which we see a lot of. “Playthings” is a lot more memorable than those efforts, and a lot harder to ignore, which makes it more likely to effectively communicate its message and even reach people who might just tune out the more serious, stern warnings of other gun safety PSAs. Of course, some of those people will just find the suggestive humor packed on “liberal propaganda” that much more offensive. But then McCann and Evolve didn’t really have any hope of reaching them anyway. While this isn’t the first time Evolve has employed humor in its PSAs — Saatchi & Saatchi New York’s February effort “The Bill of Rights for Dumbasses” took a similarly lighthearted approach — it is definitely the most effective. “Playthings” has already generated a fair share of buzz, approaching one million views since being released Wednesday and eliciting mentions in myriad media outlets. Credits after the jump. Read more

Teddy Roosevelt Likeness Aims to Remain in Brazil, Rally US Soccer Fans

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With the US-Germany World Cup showdown getting underway in a matter of minutes, we figure it’s rather timely to mention the man above, who’s going by the name of “Teddy Goalsevelt” but is actually one Mike D’Amico, an ACD at Chicago-based, WPP-owned agency, Cavalry. Those who watched the US-Portugal stunner on Sunday may have seen D’Amico hamming it up as his Teddy Roosevelt character and rallying U.S. soccer fans on the telly (he even joined in on a pic with Super Bowl XLVIII MVP/Seahawks linebacker Malcolm Smith earlier in the week according to Deadspin commenters). Now, the very optimistic D’Amico, who’s also president of the Chicago chapter of US soccer fanatics the American Outlaws, wants to continue in his efforts as the USMNT’s unofficial mascot down in Brazil should team USA (fingers crossed) make it to the knockout round.

How? Well, with the aid of his cohorts at Cavalry (who count clients including Coors Light), Mr. D’Amico has launched a GoFundMe site asking for fan help to keep him and his character in Brazil through the tournament…or as far as the US goes, we imagine. We’ll see what transpires in the next couple of hours, but thus far, D’Amico and company have raised nearly $2K in less than 24 hours and will match the first $2,500 donated. You can check out the Facebook page here for more info and go to the GoFundMe site to donate here. Now, who’s ready to join in on the by-now-familiar “I believe that we will win!” chant?

Also: here’s a supportive tweet from Listerine (and digital AOR MRY):

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