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Crouching Tiger, Mr Bean: 5 Ads You Should Watch Right Now

Soccer star Fernando Torres embraces his animal side and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon goes Mr Bean. Yep, it’s just another week in AdLand! 

So which ads have caught fire on the web over the last seven days? Here are our five picks.



5. Snickers – Mr. Bean

In the brand’s most elaborate (and star-studded) take on their “You’re Not You When You’re Hungry” tagline, Snickers’ latest spot takes on a distinctly British flavour. Britain in the early ’90’s, to be over-specific.

That’s right, it’s the return of everyone’s favourite tweed-jacketed, Jacques Tati-inspired Rowan Atkinson character, Mr. Bean. Not seen since 2012’s surprisingly-pretty-good Olympics opening ceremony, the spot finds Atkinson repeatedly spoiling the efforts of a crack team of Chinese warriors.

Though Mr. Bean’s presence in feudal China is initially baffling, it’s eventually explained by a handy Snickers ex machina. For a moment, I thought the writers had decided that Mr. Bean, like Atkinson’s other celebrated character Blackadder, might somehow transcend history, but that’s so meta I think my head might’ve exploded.


4. Adobe – The Future of Adobe Applications on Microsoft Devices

We’ve all heard that the future is bright, but how bright are we talking? According to Adobe’s prescient peak into the tech of tomorrow, the future is eye-meltingly, supernova-level bright. And that’s just the apps.

Despite the slightly dry title, Adobe and Microsoft’s display of handheld advances is outlandishly forward-looking that Robert Downey Jr. might explain them in an Iron Man film. There’s magical tablet scanners, an app that somehow pours digital paint between your devices, even a programme that lets you doctor the position of objects in a video. I could write a book about how little sense that makes to me.

If you want your fix of wonder this Friday, look no further.


3. Leica – 100

If you’ve ever retweeted a classic black and white photo or pinned a Diane Arbus print, then Leica’s sentimental ode to a century of photography is a sure-fire joy. Celebrating 100 years of producing professional and consumer cameras, the spot takes a whistle-stop tour through some of the medium’s most famed moments.

Whether recreating Henri Cartier-Bresson’s ‘decisive moment’ or instantly recognisable pop culture moments, the ad has an admirable and slavish attention to detail. Built up through layers of history and the breadth of artistic achievement, the ad even goes so far as to put on display controversial works, like hyper-violent Vietnam war photojournalism. It’s a thoughtful veneration of both a brand and an art form.


2. adidas – Hunting Ground feat. Torres

We all know by now that adidas love comparing their football boots to members of the animal kingdom. In the newest spot for their Predator Instinct boots, Spain’s Fernando Torres gets the creature treatment.

Rather more ambiguous than previous efforts, Hunting Ground cuts sharply between shots of Torres’ various sporting successes and a bizarre POV shot of an unidentified creature slithering through the grass of a football pitch. Underlined by a gravelly voice-over incessantly discussing ‘prey’ and ‘animal instinct’, you get the idea that vibe is pretty intense.

I’m looking forward to adidas going all-out and using CGI to turn Schweinsteiger into a massive python.


1. FiveTen – Danny MacAskill: The Ridge

Native Scot and BMX wizard Danny MacAskill is undeniably sharing gold. With viral hits like last year’s ‘Imaginate’ as well as countless other videos, the athlete has racked up literally millions of shares for various brands over the years. In his latest video, ‘The Ridge’, he somehow manages to top himself yet again.

Returning to the Isle of Skye, where treacherous rocks and looming cliffs approximate a ‘Lord of the Rings’ landscape shot, MacAskill and his trust bike set off on an epic journey. Climbing improbable ridges with sheer determination and calf muscle, the spot is entrancing even if you have literally zero interest in BMX.

This is mostly thanks to the stunning cinematography, which swoops around MacAskill, making his feats look yet more perilous. It’s a riveting seven minutes and a nicely vicarious way to experience something you will never, never do.