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Posts Tagged ‘Will Roth’

ASICS Prepares Us For ‘What’s Next’

Over the past few years, VITRO’s work for ASICS has been consistently high-quality, doing a remarkable job of depicting products’ ability to allow athletes achieve the impossible but not quite the unbelievable. I’m talking, of course, of popular spots that feature athletes out-running arrows and kind of walking on water, which I would link here but I know you’ve seen them hundreds of times already.

Because of this history, a new spot, “What’s Next” is a bit surprising. There’s nothing superhuman or jaw-dropping here. Just some good ol’ fashioned working out. In a note from VITRO, they mention that the spot was “shot in three days, in two countries, 4 parks, 3 gyms and an Italian restaurant, using 3 Olympians (Bryan Clay, Andy Potts & Ms. Lolo Jones) 12 elite US athletes in all — a hurdler, shot putter, javeliner, golfer, tennis star, triathlete, decathlete, pole vaulter, and track star. Cool Stuff: Our creative director wrote the lyrics for the song which provides the backbone of the piece.” Even more cool stuff: “Javeliner” is apparently a word. Try to use it in a sentence sometime this weekend!

While “What’s Next” certainly looks beautiful, and is very well directed (by some dude named “Xander”), it doesn’t exactly employ an execution brand new to the area of sports apparel. Perhaps as a results of heavy marketing, ASICS feels it doesn’t need to be different to stand out, having gained that brand recognition of the last few years. In short: It’s great, but not the groundbreaking work we’ve come to expect. Credits after the jump.

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Vitro, Asics Break Blocks and Paint Sidewalks in Latest ‘Stop At Never’ Tests

Last time we covered Asics’ ‘Stop at Never’ campaign, Vitro was running tests on the brand’s latest shoes. An athlete played tennis suspended upside down from a crane (proving Asics are form fitting), while a different shoe withstood the pressure of an industrial jackhammer. In the latest ads from the campaign, Vitro’s veered slightly from their initial track.

Don’t get me wrong, Asics is still completing fun, gravity-defying challenges. In these recent videos, though, it’s not always clear what aspect of the shoe we’re supposed to appreciate. In one, athletes create sidewalk art by running in neon paint. Though the spot successfully emphasizes a neighborhood athlete feel, we’re left wondering what actually sets this shoe apart. Lighter and faster? Isn’t that the message of every running sneak? Another video compares a volleyball player to a grasshopper and a tiger. The animal-athlete thing feels familiar.

This series does best when it’s bizarre. A soccer player dribbles his way through a bespoke “urban treadmill” and a block-breaking martial arts master succumbs to a squeaky shoe. While they don’t always get it right, Asics’ latest tests show that if an athletic brand opts to detour from the typical run faster, harder, be a superhuman strategy, they’re better off highlighting the character-filled and unexpected.

Credits after the jump.

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