The Song From Apple’s Crazy iPhone X Gamer Commercial

Well, this is a wildly entertaining iPhone X ad, where a gamer’s virtual world suddenly becomes real life. The guy can still respond casually to a text though. And what’s the compelling and tense song that’s playing throughout? It’s “Movement” by Oliver Tree.

Tuesday Throwback: Cadillac And Neal McDonough Can’t Believe Other Countries Take August Off

It’s now July 31, which means that other countries (i.e. European ones) will be taking long vacations really soon. Maybe…gasp!…even the whole month of August off. But here in ‘Merica, as Neal McDonough explains in this 2014 Cadillac ad, we don’t do that. We’re too crazy driven for that. This was a hugely polarizing ad, and your opinion of it probably lies with your political outlook. If you’re a conservative, it seems more likely that you’d agree with the spot’s consumerist and capitalist viewpoints, and argue that this is why the United States has historically been an economic and innovative powerhouse. If you’re a liberal, you might argue that this commercial underlies why Americans are so deeply in debt, stressed out, overworked, and generally have a lower quality of life than other developed nations. What’s my opinion? I think this ad is smarmy as hell. Ford made a good response to it too.

Pearle Vision Introduces Olivia

Early last year, Pearle Vision had a big hit with its touching “Ben’s Glasses” spot, which was ultimately one of my favorites of 2017. Now, they’re back with a new ad showcasing another young protagonist. Olivia is a girl whose interests are ones that aren’t typically seen as female. We see her working on the lighting of a small model house, practicing archery, and hitting tennis balls. She’s fascinated by a “Women in Space” exhibit, and reads about Joan of Arc. But with everything she does, her vision problems are apparent. So her parents take her to Pearle Vision, where she picks out a pair of glasses, and the optometrist gives her a picture of a bespectacled feminist icon: Billie Jean King. Olivia then adds King’s picture to her wall, where she’s put up a “Women Who Made History” display. Aww. It’s not quite as emotionally affecting as “Ben’s Glasses”, but still a very nice ad, created by Energy BBDO. The pretty song is “A New Start” by Tessa Rose Jackson.

Samsung’s Refrigerator Commercial

It’s not a bad ad for Samsung, but I can’t be the only one that finds the concept of a smart fridge to be a bit ridiculous (here’s a counterpoint). The song is “Together” by Layup.

Westpac Tells A Mustache-Filled Life Story In This Lovely Ad From Australia

I love this ad for Westpac, created by DDB Sydney. We see the life story of a man, starting from a chance meeting with his future wife. He wrangles in a wayward horse right before his wedding, and he’s a rugby superstar (a team player too). He’s a music teacher, he saves a child from a sandstorm, and he’s a doting father and grandfather. Aside from being a great dude, the one constant in this man’s life is his impressive mustache. But like all of us eventually, he dies. We see his funeral…and everyone in attendance is wearing fake mustaches in his honor.  The spot concludes with the message “If you’ve lost a loved one, we’re here to help.” Who’s cutting onions? The song playing throughout is a nice cover of “I’ll Never Find Another You” originally by The Seekers.

The University Of Phoenix And “You Get What You Give”…Ugh

The New Radicals’ “You Get What You Give” was one of the best songs of the ’90s. It’s a jaunty, optimistic tune which also contains lyrics that were fiercely critical of capitalism and consumer culture. Now, a cover is being used for this new University of Phoenix commercial. A school, mind you, that’s pretty infamous for its shoddy reputation of greed, bordering on scamminess. As for the commercial, it’s alright I guess. It tells the story of a working adult in 1978 who is struggling to juggle traditional college with her job, until she discovers the newly founded University of Phoenix. I get that the University of Phoenix had to obtain permission to use the song, but still. Jesus, the irony. As noted in the comments, the cover is sung by Mack. And the woman is played by Jessica Blackmore.

Britain’s Beer Alliance Says “Long Live The Local!”

If you were to think about iconic aspects of everyday British culture, the pub would be high on the list. In this compelling spot from Britain’s Beer Alliance, we see important scenes that play out in the pub, along with a voiceover that grows in urgency. And then there’s the sobering statistic that 3 pubs a day close for good, and that pubs are under increasing tax pressures. It ends with a message to sign the petition to cut the beer tax. Here’s more on this excellent ad, created by Havas London.

Old Spice And A Woman Who Nose Best Help Out This Hapless Pilot

Like a lot of Old Spice’s ads, this one is splashy has been getting a ton of views (6.4 million on YouTube to date) and comments online. A man is flying a small plane, and he doesn’t know where he is. It’s raining too! The calm woman at ground control instructs him to look under his seat, where he finds a variety of Old Spice grooming products. He’s fluster and angry, but puts on the deodorant and pomade, and starts his descent. He suddenly becomes suave, even while smoothly crashing into the room where the woman sits. They meet, and She Nose Best. Anyone know who play the man and woman?

Tuesday Throwback: DirecTV’s Russian Guy Who Has The Opulence

Yesterday’s disastrous Trump-Putin summit made me think of this hilarious DirecTV ad from the summer of 2010. “Opulence, I has it” will go down as one of the decade’s best advertising lines. Our opulent hero is surrounded by luxury and beautiful women. But he still likes savings the money, so he’s attracted to DirecTV. And you can’t forget his little giraffe friend either. This spot became meme-worthy soon after its release. The decidedly Irish, not Russian Timothy V. Murphy plays Mr. Opulence.

 

Geico: Alexander Graham Bell Talks Too Loudly On The Phone

We’re at a play. A woman (played by Kelly Vrooman) in a hot air balloon wants Barnabas to come away with her, but Barnabas resists. Suddenly, they’re interrupted by Alexander Graham Bell (played by Daniel Roebuck) answering a phone from the audience. “Ahoy-hoy” he says (that’s why Mr. Burns answers the phone “ahoy hoy”). It’s a wrong number…Graham Bell’s number is 1, the caller must want 2. They try to restart the play, but Alexander Graham Bell gets another call. Eesh.

 

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