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Watch This Man Ambush Smokers at the Point of Sale With a Brutally Personal PSA Because smoking doesn't have to kill you to ruin your life

Even if your smoking habit doesn't kill you, it can still make you miserable.

A new PSA from the Brazilian state of Paraña illustrates that point quite effectively with this long-form story of a middle-aged man whose generally happy life is marred by an illness that waited 14 years after he quit smoking to strike.

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August 31, 2015, 11:00 AM EDT

The Couple Who Quit Their Ad Jobs to Travel the World Ended Up Poor and Scrubbing Toilets The uglier side of a year-long creative journey

You remember Chanel Cartell and Stevo Dirnberger, the South African couple who quit their agency jobs this year to travel the world and document the experience. It sounded like a dream, and the lovely Instagram photos have made it look like one.

But halfway through their year-long odyssey (they're currently in Athens, having traveled 25,000 kilometers so far), they've posted a reality check on their blog—a post titled "Why We Quit Our Jobs In Advertising To Scrub Toilets"—in which they share "the uglier side of our trip." It turns out that following one's dream—while working odd jobs in exchange for room and board—involves a lot of dirty work, and more than a few tears.

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August 31, 2015, 10:14 AM EDT

Ads for the World's Greatest Baby Stroller Suddenly Sell Something Else Entirely But not until you go online

Does your baby need a stroller that comes with 4-by-4 suspension, a sandbox, a holographic projector and a bubble machine?

In our tech-crazed society, where everyone grows up to be an astronaut or coder, such a contraption—dubbed the "Latot" in ads from The Martin Agency—seems like a quasi-reasonable proposition. (WeeBabe would sell out of them in 15 minutes.) Alas, it isn't real. It's the central gimmick in an amusing parody campaign for an entirely different type of consumer service, one that has nothing to do with babies.

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August 31, 2015, 9:15 AM EDT

Star Wars Shut Down This Facebook Commenter Who Wants Female Armor to Look More Ladylike Want aloe for that lightsaber burn?

Disney-owned Star Wars seems like such a cuddly, world-embracing brand these days, you'd hardly expect them to drop the occasional AT-AT stomp on a Facebook commenter.

But that's what happened for a guy who questioned why Phasma, a character in the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens, didn't wear Storm Trooper armor that made her more visibly female.

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August 28, 2015, 6:08 PM EDT

Step Aside, Waifs. Ronda Rousey Is Carl's Jr.'s Newest Sandwich-Devouring Ad Star Brand is into defying expectations these days

For years Carl's Jr.'s spots have had a consistent formula: Take one beautiful and scantily clad model that would probably never eat Carl's Jr., add a few double entendres that highlight the model's attributes, then mention the sandwich a few times.

But lately the brand seems to be playing with consumers' expectations, and it's quite fun. 

Instead of the usual waifish model, the brand has now tapped undefeated MMA champion Ronda Rousey to introduce its Cinnamon Swirl French Toast Breakfast Sandwich.

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August 28, 2015, 4:03 PM EDT

Norm Macdonald Is Now Hosting 15-Second 'Fryerside Chats' as KFC's Colonel Sanders It's less of a talk than a mumble, though

KFC has rolled out the next phase of its campaign with the revamped Colonel Sanders, and despite Norm Macdonald's recent arrival, he's already feeling presidential. 

Earlier this month Wieden + Kennedy swapped one Saturday Night Live veteran (Darrell Hammond) for another (Macdonald) as part of its new take on Colonel Sanders for KFC.

Now a mumbling Macdonald is helming a series of FDR-esque "Fryerside Chats" in the form of 15-second spots. What's he talking about? Who knows? New deals, I guess. KFC deals.

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August 28, 2015, 3:38 PM EDT

PSAs From MTV Show How Everyday Phrases Keep Bias in the Mainstream Gender stigma is 'pervasive and insidious,' network says

The latest installment of MTV's "Look Different" anti-bias campaign looks a whole lot different than last month's showing, an over-the-top, multichannel satire about a Geek Squad-style team of uber-white corporate consultants eager to help people of color hail cabs, rent apartments and handle courtroom appearances.

Now, fresh PSAs and digital assets tackle gender bias in starker, more straightforward terms. They invite viewers to consider the unintended consequences of various preconceptions and misconceptions that may, to some people, appear benign, but can actually cause a great deal of harm.

In series of 30-second ads, phrases in blue flash across a canary-yellow screen. They include: "This is a man's job," "She'll hook up with anyone," "You'd look prettier if you smiled," "She's built like a man" and "Boys don't cry."

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August 28, 2015, 1:22 PM EDT

Denny's Offers to Partner With Burger King, Since McDonald's Is Being a McChicken The continuing quest for a hybrid hamburger

For something proposed as a peace offering, this McWhopper idea from Burger King sure seems to be escalating the burger wars.

Last night, Denny's blitzed its Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts with the proposal to partner with Burger King on creating "a Slampper© or a Whammper© or a Whoppaslamus-rex© or something." 

The diner chain is volunteering as tribute in these hunger games to take the place of McDonald's, which meekishly declined Burger King's invitation this week to create a McWhopper in honor of Peace Day.

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August 28, 2015, 9:35 AM EDT

This Clever Amnesty Campaign Imprisons Your Cursor Within a Banner Ad 11% of viewers signed group's petition

Sometimes an ad idea just doesn't get the reach it deserves, and this is certainly one of those times.

Polish agency The Digitals created a little-seen banner/pop-up ad last year that asked site visitors, "Do you want to dissolve the government?" Hovering over the response button would then lock the user's cursor into the ad, which displays the message, "In Belarus, you would go to prison for that."

The ad then released the cursor and asked the viewer to sign a petition to similarly release human rights advocate Ales Bialiatski, who eventually walked free last summer. 

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August 27, 2015, 10:43 AM EDT

McDonald's Wouldn't Create the McWhopper, So I Did, and It's an Abomination What happened when we called Burger King's bluff

"Please...kill me..."

As a wise Jeff Goldblum once put it, we were so busy wondering if we could, we didn't ask if we should.

Well I'm here to tell you: No. No we should not.

Burger King deserves credit for its masterful PR move this morning of running full-page newspaper ads offering to partner with mega-rival McDonald's on a McWhopper, created in celebration of Peace Day.

This beefy olive branch was described as "the tastiest bits of your Big Mac and our Whopper, united in one delicious, peace-loving burger."

Sadly, the world will never know what such a combination might have looked or tasted like, because McDonald's quickly declined the invitation. 

But it was too late for those of us at Adweek, who were already obsessing over this mythological beast of a burger.

As for me, I'm a man of action. So I texted an accomplice, drove to Burger King and then headed across the street to McDonald's. Bags in hand, we settled in at a nearby park and commenced with our foray into forbidden science.

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August 26, 2015, 5:53 PM EDT

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AdFreak is a daily blog of the best and worst of creativity in advertising, media, marketing and design. Follow us as we celebrate (and skewer) the latest, greatest, quirkiest and freakiest commercials, promos, trailers, posters, billboards, logos and package designs around. Edited by Adweek's Tim Nudd.

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