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Cheerios Tugs at the Heartstrings Again With a Dad Working the Third Shift And his kid, who wants time with him

Oh man, grumpy dad who's working weird hours in this new Cheerios ad from Saatchi & Saatchi. Don't get mad at your kid. Take a lesson from Peanut Butter Cheerios dad, and be cool. Hang out for a minute and laugh with Junior. It'll be nice before you head off for however many grueling hours of whatever it is you do.

Judging by your rugged appearance and attire, and that clocking in at midnight is even an option, it's presumably something blue-collar. Dock worker? Warehouse worker? Auto worker? You are in the Cheerios demo. You should be eating lots of Cheerios at 11 p.m.



Sure, Cheerios might be mimicking your frustrating but also beautiful existence right back at you just to sell more breakfast cereal, because times aren't just tough for salt-of-the-earth people with families to support, they're tough for cereal brands, too. Nobody wants to eat cereal with their kids at any time of day these days.

So, also don't get mad at Cheerios, because making ads that use children to pander to your heartstrings is what they do. Indeed, sometimes manipulating your love for sentimental family moments really does work well … so Cheerios is probably going to keep trying.

September 19, 2014, 12:01 PM EDT

Oops! One of the First People in the World With an iPhone 6 Drops It on Live TV Hate when that happens

Unless you're living under a rock, you know the iPhone 6 hits stores today. And if you're one of the souls brave enough to endure insane lines to get your new bleeding-edge item—congratulations on your achievement!

Since Australians literally live in the future, they were the first to get a crack at Apple's new device, which has amazing new features like a free U2 album no one wants.

Well, as Australian Jack Cooksey was being interviewed by a Perth television station to get a first look at his new prized possession, well—take a look below at the dramatic conclusion.

Via Daily Dot.

 
And here it is from another angle:

September 19, 2014, 11:53 AM EDT

Guinness Takes You Inside Its Storied Dublin Brewery in Almost Mystical New Ad '255 years into a 9,000-year lease'

By celebrating its Irish roots, Guinness subtly sails into the mystic with "In Pursuit of More," a campaign that bows with this 90-second spot from Philadelphia agency Quaker City Mercantile.

St. James's Gate, the brand's 255-year-old Dublin brewery, is the inspiration for a meditation on its heritage. We learn something of its history, meet current employees and get a feel for the brewing process. "We're only 255 years into a 9,000-year lease," Irish actor Cillian Murphy says in a lilting, raspy voiceover. "We have a lot more beer to make."

In fact, the lease is no longer valid, as Guinness purchased its Dublin site long ago. Even so, that historical detail fits the overall thrust of this broadcast and online initiative. Developed mainly for the U.K. and Ireland, with more short films to follow, the work creates a timeless, almost mythical aura around the brand.



"We felt it was time to open the gates and let the world see the people who make our beer special," says Guinness marketing director Stephen O'Kelly. Fair enough. But Philip Montgomery's smooth direction, with visuals that are muted, gauzy, and at times slightly over-bright, give the piece an ethereal, quasi-spiritual vibe.

This vibe resonates even during some of the clip's most commonplace scenes. For example, the spot opens with a guy cycling to work at the brewery. As a moody piano piece by Alain Francois Bernard plays in the background, he turns down a narrow cobblestone street—it resembles a tunnel—and rides up to St. James's Gate. The huge doors are dark and imposing, like freshly pulled pints of Guinness stout. As he slips inside, it's no stretch to imagine he's entered a holy place where past, present and future blend into a heady brew.

What could be more on brand for a company emphasizing its ties to Ireland, the land of legends and strong beliefs, and particularly for Guinness, which has a devout cult following worldwide?

Photo via.

September 19, 2014, 10:18 AM EDT

As Scotland Counts Votes, Groundskeeper Willie Offers Himself Up as the Nation's Leader Simpsons character's ambitions grow

Should today's vote lead to an independent Scotland, the country will need a fearless leader to represent it on the world stage. Obviously, Groundskeeper Willie of The Simpsons is that man. It's the latest bit of genius from the Fox show, and expect a lot more of it very soon.

September 18, 2014, 8:16 PM EDT

Travel Ad Features Singing Fart Bubbles, and That Might Be Its Least Crazy Part The wonderful world of Wotifia

OK, you world-wise travel people. Ever been to Wotifia? Never heard of it? It's right next to Freedonia, that fake country invented by the Marx Brothers in Duck Soup.

Wotifia is actually the brainchild of ad agency M&C Saatchi in Sydney, which borrowed a page from the Marx Brothers—and early Terry Gilliam's work for Monty Python—to help rejuvenate the image of Australia's largest online travel site, Wotif.com.

The agency created a short buddy movie that features two clueless looking dudes literally falling into surreal travel adventures in an animated world called—what else?—Wotifia.

The adventures are set to a ridiculous music track with ridiculous lyrics that sound like a mashup of Barry Manilow and Lionel Richie after you've taken a whopping dose of hallucinogens.



The boys encounter dancing llamas in South America, a soil-your-swimshorts experience with sharks, a bone-breaking ski trip to the Alps, a run-in with a 100-foot bikini clad beauty who emerges from the sea like Godzilla, and a lazy Susan full of Chinese food like it's a merry-go-round.

Michael Betteridge, Wotif's general manager of marketing, says the campaign, which launched last month, "is designed to reach the 'next generation' of travelers and introduce them to our brand, our range of travel products and experiences, and to our irreverent and fun approach to travel."

Irreverence is certainly the theme. Credits below.

Click to Read More →

September 18, 2014, 4:31 PM EDT

How 9 Brands Used Twitter's Sign Bunny Meme to Make Little Billboards And what its creator thinks of that

Illustration: Alfred Maskeroni

Watching brands fail at Twitter has become cliché at this point. And just when you think they've gotten the idea, it's fail whale all over again.

Still, they keep trying.

Earlier this week, a fun meme spread through Twitter starring a cute ASCII bunny holding a sign. If you were on Twitter that day, you couldn't miss it. If not, a few explainers will bring you up to speed.

Amber Gordon, a creative strategist at Tumblr and former community manager at Denny's, is credited with starting the meme and has since seen it go viral.

Of course, brands—ever vigilant to real-time trends online nowadays—quickly noticed. And many of them whipped up little corporate bunnies of their own, brandishing pithy little branded signs.

We spoke with Gordon about the phenomenon and what it was like watching big brands attach themselves to a meme in real time. And she also has some advice to the community managers of the big brands, too. 

How does it feel to see big brands joining in the fun?
Seeing brands use these types of silly Internet trends is so exciting. Using a native language that's become relevant to your audience is exactly what more brands should be doing, but in an authentic way. Meaning, research it before you post! (knowyourmeme.com is a great resource.)

Will it break the Internet if @Energizer does one?
If Energizer does one, I might cry tears of joy.

Does it feel weird that the bunny signs have now basically become little billboards for corporations?
I love them. Twitter itself is just words, and ASCII art makes them visually interesting. Honestly I think a message has a stronger impact (for me personally) when you can associate an image with it. That's why Tumblr is so great, because you can do all of that there!

Below, check out nine brands that have given the sign bunny meme a shot:

September 18, 2014, 3:12 PM EDT

This Dog's Road Trip Stretching Routine Might Be the Best Reason to Buy a Citroen Well, or maybe the fuel efficiency

Citroen puts on the dog once again in this commercial with an anthropomorphized mutt who charmingly works out the muscle kinks and stiffness of a long drive when its owner pulls in to a desert gas station.

The spot, from Les Gaulois in Paris, promotes Citroen's BlueHDi engine, which, according to the title card, allows drivers to "stop less often at the pump." Some versions of the ad substitute the line, "Next stop is in 1,520 km." That's a whole lot of miles in dog years.

Directed by Control's Joachim Back, the lonely, sun-baked locations succeed at suggesting a winding, hours-long journey where the stops are few and far between. So does the use of "Sixteen Tons" on the soundtrack, which will now be rumbling through my head for the duration of my lifespan.

Your enjoyment of the spot—a companion to Citroen's canine love story (I mean, woof story) from last year—will probably hinge on your attitude about ads where special effects are used to make animals and babies act like adult human beings.

In my view, it's no stretch to say this puppy's a winner.

September 18, 2014, 10:50 AM EDT

Stunning PSA Shifts Time to Undo the Killing on a Syrian School Playground NGOs band together in appeal to UN

Martin Stirling already directed one powerful PSA about Syria—Save the Children's incredible spot from last spring, which imagined if the crisis were taking place in London. But the Unit 9 director wasn't finished.

With the United Nations General Assembly meeting next week, the world's leading NGOs—Oxfam, Save the Children, Care, Amnesty and a hundred more—have banded together for a new PSA, directed by Stirling, that attempts to capture the horrors being endured by ordinary Syrians on a daily basis.

See the spot here:



The stylistic choice of using reverse footage almost becomes a moral choice here—it's the hook that makes the piece haunting, and shareable, and thus capable of making a difference. The film is the centerpiece in the NGOs' #WithSyria campaign, which drives viewers to a petition asking the UN Security Council to take next steps to protect civilians.

ISIS is dominating the headlines today, but the plight of ordinary Syrians remains critical. The death toll in Syria is now close to 200,000. Most of the civilian deaths are caused by "barrel bombs"—oil drums filled with explosives, chemical weapons and rusty nails, dropped from Syrian regime helicopters into populated areas. The same areas are often hit twice in quick succession in order to kill first responders.

"I really had no choice about whether or not to make this film," Stirling says in a statement. "I was swamped by a couple of projects, and I tried my best to walk away but found it impossible. Whenever I thought about not making this film I was haunted by the images and stories I had come across in preparation for the 'Most Shocking Second a Day Video' earlier in the year.

"This film felt like an appropriate follow-up to that first one—it was creatively and stylistically different in a way which would hopefully capture the attention of a wide audience and the hearts of influential policy makers."

Credits below.

Click to Read More →

September 18, 2014, 10:35 AM EDT

Old Spice's Man-Robot Sits Down With Drew Brees, and It's Awkwardly Amusing Cue the jazz, the laughs, and the pain

If watching Drew Brees talk to a hyper-awkward robot for six minutes is your kind of thing, then Old Spice has an ad for you.

The New Orleans Saints quarterback keeps his cool during "4th and Touchdown," a fictional sports news show hosted by Old Spice's new mascot, who in the recent past has been doing well with human women, despite his total lack of social skills.

Absent that context, the moral now seems to be that viewers should act like Drew Brees, not like a hyper-awkward robot, which is pretty sound advice regardless. Even if the robot claims to have great hair thanks to Old Spice, he's not the most reliable narrator.



The pair's antics range from fairly grating to pretty amusing, with some sharp writing and a lot of waiting between the high points (see: roughly 4:15, Brees pretending to be a brass instrument). In a way, the finale rewards your patience, though may not be quite enough to compensate (perhaps a shorter edit would be in order?).

Anyway, the whole thing deserves credit for trying to send up the tradition of senseless televised sports coverage, even if the pass doesn't quite connect. That robot does a solid impression of a smug anchor.

And if you do like it, stay tuned for more. The brand is promising appearances from Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles, Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green and Seattle Seahawks defensive back Earl Thomas.

September 18, 2014, 7:52 AM EDT

Naomi Campbell Loses Her Arms on the Cover of W's October Issue But who needs them with a face like that?

Photo: Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin for W magazine

W magazine has just released five different covers for its October issue, each featuring a woman dubbed one of "The New Royals" by the oversize fashion glossy.

You'll find Kristen Wiig in a retro bouffant; Ellen Page sporting a menswear-inspired ensemble; model Cara Delevingne modeling '60s chic; Monégasque royal Charlotte Casiraghi in a glamorous black gown; and supermodel Naomi Campbell looking ... armless. 

Yes, poor Campbell (this may be the only time you'll ever hear that) appears to have had her arms removed in her cover portrait, which was shot by the fashion industry's beloved photography duo Inez and Vinoodh. Presumably, this isn't an all-to-common Photoshop fail or the result of a tragic accident, but rather just an awkward pose that hides her arms completely behind her torso. (At least, we hope so.)

Otherwise, she looks stunning!

September 17, 2014, 7:45 PM EDT

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AdFreak is your 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. Updated every weekday, with a weekly recap on Saturdays.

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