November 27, 2008

Eat spuds (bring toothpaste)

There was some research published recently that claimed 40% of young adults do not know how to cook a jacket potato. Considering that all you do is wash it and shove it in an oven, one’s Daily Mail Reflex is to assume that youngsters are just too stupid. I think it’s more plausible that nobody’s actually bothered to show them.
My 10 year-old didn’t know how to drive a car, but, after seeing a particularly harrowing episode of Dora the Explorer, he was so worried about how he’d survive a zombie apocalypse that I let him loose in our Hummer in Sainsbury’s carpark, as well as revealing that a brain shot is the only way to kill the undead. He also knows how to cook a potato. You see? Showing and doing is the only way to teach.
Presumably the same 40% of potatophobes won’t be buying anything from McCain’s spud range because they’d have the added burden of opening the bag. Health & Safety rules would forbid the formal teaching of scissor-use but, again, one’s Daily Mail Reflex leads one to assume that the aforementioned youths would just use a flick knife.
But seriously, I’ve long been intrigued by this brand. It really is a case of great advertising, shame about the product. Agency BMB have fun with the food porn genre in a way that trumps M&S. The recent Media Guardian piece about the campaign sums up my thoughts too: the ads work because, dammit, you know they’re bad for you but the copy makes you really want it.
The problem is that having tried the product, it’s fucking awful. The whole goose fat thing (no doubt inspired by Nigella) leaves one’s teeth coated in a residue that’s ickier than a waitress’s forehead at a bukkake party. Still, it’s the ingredient that would draw the shopper away from the infinitely cheaper raw loose spuds and onto the dinnerplate equivalent of a deep fried Mars bar.
It’ll be interesting to see how brands like McCain survive the recession. After all, lighter purses are the greatest spur to changing consumer behaviour. That 40% who can’t bake a spud? They’ll learn, because they have to.

See also:
M&S dish up drool-worthy dinners
At last, REAL food porn
Sweet and creamy

November 26, 2008

Sod it, let's just damn well ban everything

This snap is from Brand Republic:

The world we live in now. And how can you ban a campaign (The Sun) that ended months ago?

November 25, 2008

An ad at the pinnacle of WTF?ness

The end of advertising will look like this.

November 24, 2008

Monkey invasion sub-plan #9923

And while you are asleep we will send in tiny robot elephants to inject custard into your brains. You will be filled with a desire to spend your holidays sitting beside motorways, smiling happily at the thought of kittens. You will engage lorry drivers in pointlessly inane conversations before quietly murdering them to placate the purple fairies. In the evenings you will complain to the BBC.

Oatibix is served by WCRS. Bless.

November 22, 2008

Pueraria Mirifica - boobs or bollocks?

It was one of those twelfth-pint quests for wisdom that, without warning, hit you before deciding to continue with the next drink. I wondered out loud why it is that the part of a woman between her hips and her breasts is called the waist. My muslim drinking pal informed me that it's because God could have easily fitted in another pair of tits there.
Speaking of which, here's an even worse joke about chest puppies: a naturapathic website charging clown money ($100+ a pop) for tit cream. I really can't understand why they'd need so many gratuitous demo videos (**Not Safe For Work**) which I've studied carefully and concluded that there's no difference between Before and After, other than with the viewer for whom it's probably quite difficult to remain sitting still.

November 20, 2008

Blow your noses and seize him!

Major Media Event Alert: Monty Python has launched its own YouTube channel. That's my excuse for posting my favourite Python movie clip here. It's one that the chimplets enjoy, sympathising with the agony of the Roman soldiers as they strain to hold back laughter. To them, it's just like those occasions when someone farts in school assembly.

November 19, 2008

Mike Hunt's mate

No idea of origin...

received via email

November 18, 2008

More woo infiltrates UK advertising

Two current ads from British telly that are worrying.
We like to think that regulations keep our advertising clean from bunk and woo. I believe that consumers should be left in no doubt about what they’re being sold.
This first ad at least has the honesty to be open about the organisation behind it. Brits in general have a healthy scepticism about religious messages, so hopefully the vast majority will ignore it.

But it can’t be right to sell a scientifically unproven concept such as God in a TV ad.
You can hold a Mars bar. You can see the AA man fix your car. You can get that cheque from the insurance company. But what proof do you get that you’ve received divine service? And yes, it could be argued that it’s the church they’re selling, not the deity, but what would be the point in signing up unless you believed in a divine being? It’s like selling the sizzle without there being a sausage.
Take a really close look at this second ad.

At first, I thought it was a peculiarly-skewed tourist promotion. I can see the message being enticing to almost anyone (although I’m gratified that my teenager, upon seeing it on Sky News, scoffed and judged it “weird”). But when you visit the website, there’s the feeling that this is some kind of humanist, all-inclusive, officially-endorsed peace-promoting charity.
Dig around, and it turns out the the way to happiness follows an unexpected path.
Dishonest, or what?

November 16, 2008

The iPhone app all girlfriends should have

Now this is what I call a product demo. It's an iPhone horse racing game which is demonstrated, in a lurid stroke of genius, by two blonde chicks spanking themselves. No more need be said.


November 12, 2008

When little girls' things make you think of Kill Kill Kill

Can you take the fear? Can you, really? Then prepare the brain bleach and don't blame me if this forces you to scoop out your eyes with a spoon. This... thing... it will haunt your dreams. For ever.

November 11, 2008

Buxton rips Obama a new catchphrase

Regulars will know how much I enjoy Adam Buxton’s TV and radio work. He has carved himself out a niche online too, and has just posted this Obama-inspired masterpiece.

More Buxton brilliance:
Driven by dicks
Praise the toad
The future of British TV
Before BB turned nasty
Star Wars: A New Pope

It’s not like this in the films I’ve been watching

Funny, but you’d think with the subject matter in hand that ads for lube and condoms would be a bit better than this. Maybe the Trojan Games were the high water mark and since then, all the fun has evaporated.
Or perhaps it’s a British thing, and we’d expect ads about sex to be funny. Instead, swap the products advertised herein for something more mundane, like shaving cream or a chocolate bar, and suddenly they would be quite amusing.

November 10, 2008

My first giraffe-related post in fucking ages

I have a white coat and have spent the last 15 minutes designing a certificate on Powerpoint. I am now a scientist so, yeah, fuck you Richard Dawkins. And, guess what? Just before I entered Giraffe Towers this morning, I happened to notice a red car with the first three registration letters RYX. Afterwards, I thought: what were the odds of me seeing a red car with the registration letters RYX at precisely 8:20 this morning? Fucking astronomic, that’s what. This proves I am psychic.
And now, to complete my day of awesome, I have seen proof that there is a god, and here it is.
Dear chimp worshippers: because a giraffe’s head doesn’t explode, there must be a god.

(Curious to see how long this video stays up until it dies of embarrassment…)

Beware the Violent Kittens Of Death

Part of the fun of being a parent is the joy of the many opportunities where one can confuse the shit out of the rugrats, knowing full well that they’ll grow up and find you out. For instance, Chimplet #1 believed for years that I was a retired Jedi and my spaceship was buried under my house. Other deliberate misconceptions enjoyed by the tribe are that my exercise bike could be easily transformed into a jet pack, that the Cretaceous extinction really came about because of the Fourth Awesome Dinosaur War (e.g. Velociraptors with plasma guns, Pterosaurs with miasma bombs, etc.), and my personal favourite because it is still believed by Chimplet #3, that little girls have to decide on their 10th birthday whether they want to remain humans or turn into a horse.
I reckon this Toyota ad by Publicis Mojo must have been made when the creatives were completely shit-faced, or they are still very young and under the influence of a Dad With An Overactive Imagination cos the scenario here, that cats go to clubs and have huge fuck-off kung-fu fights with weapons, is one that’s right out of my book.

November 07, 2008

Up Mario's pipes

I now have lost any inclination to use Gumtree or play Super Mario after reading this personal ad.

Clickify to embiggen

via Holy Moly newsletter


Extreme Expressions Of Joy Beyond All Reason, #5.
Spotted on Flickr

November 06, 2008

bang bang

Minor agency anecdote: Ditzy US citizen who joined one of our account teams last month was thrilled that the UK celebrated the results of the US election with lots of fireworks.

Something else for Daily Mail readers to complain about

I can’t be arsed to find the film clip that this ad is based on, because I want as little to do with wee Tom Cruise and his crazy space monkey friends as possible. Instead, I’d like you to appreciate the athleticism and convincing air guitarism displayed by this ugly skinny bird. And just look at that jolly nice furniture.

November 05, 2008

This is why I use a map

Copy: "Stock Avenue or Stroke Avenue?"
DRAFTFCB Caracas, Venezuela; pic via Coloribus

Obama wins. Death Star explodes.

With 300 British and over 100,000 Iraqi deaths, don’t tell me that American politics doesn’t matter to us. The election result is the USA finding its halo again. Once on the side of the angels, many of its countrymen and women working on this side of the pond were aware that affection for their nation by the pesky people of Yurp was virtually non-existent. Obama’s win is like Darth Vader’s mask coming off. The end of the evil empire, I hope.

pic from b3ta

November 04, 2008

It's my carpet and I'll cry if I want to

So we broke in through my own bedroom window and decided to strip on the way out of the room. Don’t ask about the logic, or my fucking huge Y-fronts, but wonder instead about the strange spell that my new carpet exerted on Mistress #14.
Just what is it about women and home furnishings? There must be something in the Shake ‘n Vac that turns their brains to custard. I mean, thirty quid a square foot and the daft cow dumps her bird-murdering beast on my brand new carpet.
Be a love and give it a good scrub and hoover. I'm off to the footie.

More proof that women and animals shouldn’t be allowed indoors:

Worship your furry overlords

Harveys' big offer
My furniture takes another caning
Those worms didn't come out of my arse, madam
Down boy
Get off my bleedin' chair
Are you sitting comfortably?

November 03, 2008

Brand appeal

There’s a vicious, petty streak that runs through the DNA of a certain type of Brit, and never was this more apparent than over the last week. Considering the state of the world, the media became strangely obsessed over an obscene phone call. Stupid? Kind of.
What I saw was a superb example of a brand completely understanding its consumers and manipulating them with masterful dexterity. I speak, of course, about the Daily Mail (and its Sunday sister). The Mail is at its best when fostering outrage, in this example seizing the moment a week after the actual event.
The Mail knows its readers aren’t interested in the strife that afflicts the world. Instead it bypassed the immediate financial worries that dog its readership and went straight for the heaviest hit: scapegoats.
Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand aren’t murderers, terrorists, US Republicans, paedophiles, or even worse, bankers. And yet over 10,000 complainants, none of whom listened to the show (which earned two complaints for swearing, not for the prank), stood up from their comfy sofas and, still in their glass houses, elected to throw stones.