Yes, one of the stars of The Expendables 2 (now playing in theaters everywhere) is back, flexing his impressively musical muscles for Old Spice and W+K.
In what we’re being told is what’s a “first-of-its-kind embeddable interactive experience,” Muscle Music allows viewers to record their very own percussion-laden jam session after they stream and impressive demo performed by Mr. Terry Crews. But, for those of us who learn better from following directions than button-mashing, Old Spice has provided us with this handy keyboard map:
Sure, it’s just sort of silly and gets a little boring after about a minute of messing around, but realize that this is as much of an ad for W+K, prodco MJZ, VFX company The Mill and Vimeo itself as much as it is for Old Spice. From a purely technological standpoint, this could be a big step forward in integrating audience interaction into streaming video. Your move, YouTube.
Credits after the jump.
Update: By the way, the Terry Crews has been answering questions following his new Old Spice ad launch on Reddit. Go here for the Q+A.
While most general culture publications are using this week to run back-to-school features, The A.V. Club has been running a series about a much more influential part of the American experience–the mall. Reading it, it’s hard to not think about how my perspective of the local mall has changed over time. In middle school, I looked at the mall almost as an amusement park, a mini-EPCOT Center with different worlds mostly hidden behind showy storefronts. In high school, the mall became a place to kill time between minimum wage jobs, hoping to bump into your crush in the food-court during your 20-minute lunch break. In college, the mall became a place to avoid, a symbol of inflated consumerism and a reminder of how naive your worldview was in high school.
Now, I see the mall as an intimidatingly bizarre monolith, a place I feel horribly uncomfortable in whenever I’m forced to enter one for a quick errand. It’s hard to believe that a place where I spent an inordinate amount of time at 16 now seems so foreign. But, there are those people, who we’ll call “mall people,” that never change despite how much your perspective might. In fact, if I were to identify the polar opposite of myself among mall denizens, it would be the dude who works the remote-control helicopter kiosk. No one, not even the manager of the Gap, is more in his element than that guy. He’s the guy who gets free pretzels from Auntie Anne’s, dates that hot new girl who works at American Eagle, and the guy you hope will invite you to eat lunch at the cool table one day.
Well, W+K Portland is honoring that guy in a new TV campaign for Velveeta, “Eat Like That Guy You Know.” The guy in question here, who Bud Light would name “Mr. RC Helicopter Kiosk Employee,” has in my eyes gone from awesome to lame to actually kind of cool again as I grow up. Hey, he may not be pulling in six-figures, but he has the swagger of someone who pulls in seven.
On Kraft’s Velveeta website, visitors are encouraged to eat like many different archetypes they’re familiar with. Again, it has a “Real Men of Genius” vibe to it, but in classic Velveeta fashion, it’s just a little cheesier. Credits after the jump.
Anyone who’s gone running after a hard day knows the power of an active imagination. With every arm pump, you might be punching your boss in the face. With every stride, you’re building yourself into the powerhouse that will soon confront your boyfriend about his lack of follow-through. Some picture themselves as superheroes, sprinting through the streets to make the ultimate rescue. When we push our bodies, our minds make the physical effort possible–and even fun.
W+K’s latest spots for Nike+ helps bring those mental adventures to life. The star runners of their TV ads are in a real-life video game, leaping up palettes and climbing through windows as they complete their workouts. Nike+ helps runners measure, map, track and share their runs, gamifying the work out process and inspiring everyday runners to reach farther.
My only complaint with both ‘Game on World’ and ‘Run Your City’ is their weak music selection. I get that they’re going for a tinkery game soundtrack, but I would rather they forfeit the game theme in favor of some motivational (and still techno-flavored) Diplo or bouncy pop Walk the Moon.
Anything backed by the opening thumps of Kanye West/Jay-Z‘s “No Church in the Wild” is bound to be epic. W+K’s latest spot for Dodge is no exception.
This 90-second instructional ad makes car creators look like Mad Men, minus the booze. Instead, they’re drinking coffee, kicking out committees that make compromises, and redefining the modern vehicle. The showcased car is the 2013 Dodge Dart, a compact chariot that can be started via smart phone and gets 41 miles to the gallon.
The copywriters did a fantastic job giving this ad’s narrator a mixture of humorous and informational lines, rhythmically recited over Watch the Throne’s music and a collage of video scenarios. The ad introduces Dodge’s tagline, “New Rules” (wait, does Bill Maher have a case?). If car manufacturing is really about to become this fast-paced and fun, we’re willing to follow Dodge’s guidelines.
Once a company synonymous with overseas sweatshops and cheap labor, Nike wasn’t exactly what anyone would consider a model of environmental sustainability. In a PR move, the brand is making a move to change that reputation, starting the Nike Open Challenge for Sustainable Materials.
In partnership with Random Hacks of Kindness, an organization of developers and programmers that seeks to develop practical open technology, Nike is asking manufactures and innovators to utilize sustainable materials in accordance with the Nike Sustainable Materials Index. Essentially a microsite, the index allows makers of things to evaluate the materials they’re using according to environmental impact, from waste to water to energy.
Along with the challenge and microsite (Nike has money, y’all), the brand along with W+K and the latter’s in-house “Portland Incubation Experiment” kicked off the challenge with the above video. “The Making of Making” celebrates Portland denizens whose work results in strong, calloused hands, all the while making fun of those of us with desk jobs that leave us with silky smooth baby hands. The challenge officially launches on Saturday, so if you know anyone with creative ideas who has the know-how to give Nike a hand, visit the challenge’s Tumblr to get the details on the project and updates on submissions. Credits follow after the jump.
When he’s not filming Sly Stallone’s sequel to the bloody, guilty pleasure opus that is The Expendables or cracking us up as the penny-pinching pops on syndication in Everybody Hates Chris, Terry Crews is once again screaming at the screen in a series of new spots for Old Spice. W+K continues its onslaught for the P&G brand in a series of spots promoting the Red Zone body spray line.
We kind of like how Crews serves as the boisterous, aggressive counterpart to Isaiah Mustafa‘s smooth baritone casanova, though we’re not sure how this will disrupt our sleep patterns when it airs as yours truly dozes off to the telly at night. By the way, you might know the directors from the campaign, Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim, aka the minds behind Tim & Eric Awesome Show, Great Job. In phase two of the “Smell the Power” campaign, look for co-branded television advertisements with fellow P&G brands Bounce and Charmin. Check out three more clips and credits after the jump.
It took the joint efforts of W+K’s Portland HQ and Sao Paulo branch to come up with this new sport for Nike, which arrives just a week after AKQA launched its own running-themed piece for Nike+. Maybe it’s that time of year to motivate people to get off their asses and get in shape (but wait, isn’t it almost winter?). Whatever the case, W+K’s latest Nike work features an athletic, extremely focused gal who is undeterred by whatever life throws at her and can give Forrest Gump a run for his money (Rocky doesn’t stand a chance, but we’re somewhat reminded of his classic jog through Philly here). The spot, dubbed “Some Time Together,” promotes Nike’s Lunarglide + 3Shield line and will be complemented by weekly “Never Stop Running” challenges on Facebook and other social media channels. Credits after the jump.
You know, these ads just aren’t the same without Isaiah Mustafa, but then again, maybe it was time for W+K Portland to make a fresh start with its valuable client, Old Spice. But we don’t know if this spot, which may have been copywriter/art director Eric Kallman‘s last writing effort for the brand (didn’t he jump to BFG9000 already?), is it. Here, a sea captain with the worst fake facial hair since Theo and Cockroach on The Cosby Showcharms a lass while punching an octopus. The swagger and nod to Mustafa is still in effect, but our swooning has long since ceased. TV credits and a print element after the jump.
Is it just us or does the tagline for Wieden + Kennedy’s next phase of the “Go Forth” campaign for Levi’s remind you of Justin Timberlake‘s cringe-worthy line in The Social Network? Whatever the case, the parties involved are back with a new, anthemic (and very oddly timed) campaign about “building a new and better future” that of course also promotes the Levi’s fall collection.
This time, the words of Charles Bukowski replace Walt Whitman‘s as the poetic narrative and the scene shifts to Berlin in this 60-second short film directed by Ralf Schmerberg. It’s not just about American pride anymore, folks, though the idea and imagery basically appears the same. Below, you can check out the Berlin-based collaboration between W+K Amsterdam and artist Alexandre Farto that officially kicked off the campaign last month. Peep film credits after the jump and check out the Facebook component here.
Hey, if hip-hop stars and NFL athletes can dig the Chrysler 300, why can’t fashion designers? Well, at least John Varvatos seems to. Just like the car itself, the current New York resident is also “imported from Detroit” and his rock-influenced style is reflected in this latest spot from W+K Portland (hey, the man is buying an Iggy & the Stooges record and his boutique took over CBGBs if you’re looking for credentials).
Guess that now that the love letter to the blue-collar world of Detroit has been sent with the Slim Shady Super Bowl (and BrandBowl-winning) ad, W+K is just content to let celebs take the wheel and set this campaign in cruise control. But, at least we give props to the agency for enlisting one of our fave directors, Mark Romanek, to helm this spot. Credits after the jump.