Little princesses drop f-bombs, Gisele stares intensely and David ‘Goldenballs’ Beckham keeps his clothes on. 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. Android: The Sweet Search For L
Winning the cutesy tech sweepstakes every year, Android’s OS names are a loveable industry in-joke. Rather than Apple’s obsession with jungle cats, Android names its operating systems after delicious cakes, sweets and treats. We’ve already had Donut, Ice Cream Sandwich and last year’s cross-branding, Kit-Kat. Its latest spot charts their efforts to find the sweetest ‘L’.
A tongue-in-cheek parody of audition rooms, the ad shows a variety of acting hopefuls dressed up as their favourite dessert beginning with ‘L’. Even though its several thousand shares doesn’t reflect a strong online response, it’s a clever concept with a lot of very funny details.
Oh, and in case you’re wondering, the new Android OS is named *spoiler alert* Lollipop. Yum Yum.
4. Haig Club: David Beckham
David Beckham announced a couple of years ago that he was giving up his prodigious semi-nude modelling career in order to spare his children of future embarrassment. While nothing I can say will bring back underwear-clad Becks, his latest ad for whiskey Haig Club shows he’s moving up in the world, at least.
Rather than gallivanting like Tom Cruise in ‘Risky Business’, the spot has Beckham (and his equally rugged, sophisticated friends) approaching a luxurious Scottish idyll via air, land and sea. As Alt-J’s ‘Left Hand Free’ rings out, the friends arrive, immediately change into formal gear and pour themselves a whiskey. It’s intimated that this is a tradition, but who or what is being celebrated is sort of beside the point.
I should mention that, since beginning this piece, cursory googling has revealed a new Beckham underwear shoot appeared just earlier this year. So I don’t know what to believe anymore.
3. FCKH8: ‘Potty-Mouthed Princesses’ (NSFW)
Don’t be surprised this weekend if your social networks get swamped by little girls swearing like sailors, it’s only the true-blue spot from t-shirt brand FCKH8. Supporting their line of feminist-themed clothing, ‘Potty-Mouthed Princesses’ features five young girls swearing profusely as they snappily outline gender injustices, including wage disparity, sexual assault and ingrained misogyny.
The hook behind the campaign is cheekily determining what’s more offensive: children swearing or the aforementioned social imbalances? FCKH8, who recently produced ‘anti-racism’ shirts in the wake of the Ferguson shootings, have already come under some criticism for piggy-backing on social issues. Whether you agree with YouTube’s decision to pull ‘Potty-Mouthed Princesses’ or not, the brand have set out to get people’s ire up and it looks like it’s worked.
2. UNICEF: ‘A Vaccine For Violence’
A shocking new PSA from children’s charity UNICEF, ‘A Vaccine For Violence’ dramatises the hopelessness and fear inherent in the lives of such vulnerable children.
Beginning with the face of a young boy bruised by gang violence, the ad’s otherworldly pharmacy offers a solution: a literal vaccine for curing gang violence. On the shelf, we see similar formulas for ‘Rape’, ‘Murder’ and ‘War’. The boy snatches the bottle, but soon the fantasy breaks apart.
According to the ad, a child dies every five minutes as the result of some kind of violence. Prompting viewers to visit UNICEF’s website, ‘A Vaccine For Violence’ tackles a harrowing topic in a sensitive but arresting fashion.
1. Chanel No. 5: ‘The One That I Want’
By perfume advertising’s high standards of nonsensicality and incongruous imagery, Chanel’s ‘The One That I Want’ is remarkably easily to summarize. Charting the relationship ups and downs of Gisele Bundchen and her broody beau, it’s the closest perfume ads have come to a kitchen sink drama.
Underplayed by a spaced-out version of ‘The One That I Want’ from ‘Grease’, the tension begins with Gisele and her man staring intensely at each other, even as she surfs waves on a Chanel-branded board. Eventually he flees and though his motives are unexplained, I assumed it was jealousy derived from her surfing pretty much constantly.
After a frankly weird separation period, they end up reuniting in the very club where that ‘The One That I Want’ cover is being played – go figure! Hooray for a beginning, middle and end.