BBDO New York solemnly pays tribute to servicemen in their Fourth of July spot for Guinness, entitled “Empty Chair.”
The spot, the latest U.S. installment of the brand’s “Made of More” campaign, was created in collaboration with Biscuit Filmworks and director Noam Murro. Its patriotism-stoking approach is nothing new to beer advertising, as Anomaly’s “A Hero’s Welcome” Super Bowl spot for Budweiser this year (to cite just one example) also celebrated American veterans in a somewhat cheesy fashion. How you view the ad will depend largely on your opinion of such an approach (as either a welcome homage or emotional manipulation) but the 90-second “Empty Chair” is certainly well-crafted. It opens on a bartender pouring a Guinness and leaving it at an empty table, an act she repeats many times over the course of the ad, at one point even stopping someone from taking a chair from the table. A delayed reveal at the spot’s conclusion puts everything into perspective, followed by Guinness’ “Made of More” tagline, which syncs well with the ad’s message.
It’s worth noting that between this solemn spot from Guinness and the opposite approach taken by Newcastle, the most memorable ads of the Independence Day season came from non-American brewers. Stick around for credits after the jump. Read more