Freak Week: Winners All Around

Macy’s apparently wasn’t watching the World Series very closely, judging by its placement of full-page ads last Monday in Philadelphia papers congratulating the Phillies for repeating as champions. There were two problems with that: The series hadn’t ended at that point, and the Phillies were trailing the Yankees three games to one and were on the brink of elimination. (They did win Game 5 that night but lost Game 6 on Wednesday.) Obviously it was some sort of trafficking error, and a pretty embarrassing one. Macy’s quickly apologized for any “inconvenience” suffered by Phillies fans, and on Thursday the retailer ran a virtually identical ad in New York papers congratulating the Yankees.

Weezer and Snuggie, two great tastes that taste great together?
However you feel about the band or the blanket with sleeves individually, you have to admit their decision to team up is a bit of mad genius. Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo hinted earlier this year that a Weezer-branded Snuggie was in development, and sure enough, the infomercial broke last week. Basically, you get a Snuggie with the Weezer name on it, along with the band’s new CD, for the low, low price of just $29.99. The only downside is that they ditched Cuomo’s preferred name for the product: the Wuggie. Instead, they’re just calling it the Weezer Snuggie.

On a more high-budget note, we also posted AMV BBDO’s latest Guinness spot last week. The ad shows a bunch of manly men literally bringing a new world into existence-pulling trees and grass into place, building snowy mountains and shimmering waterfalls. The agency worked without too much CGI, and the shoot was so labor-intensive, you get tired just reading about it: It was shot in four countries (New Zealand, Canada, Fiji and the U.K.) and required three months of prep. The glacier shot was filmed at 8,500 feet in New Zealand, and it took 45 women six days to hand-stitch the artificial grass. Was it worth it? It’s visually stunning, though the connection to Guinness might be a bit vague.

Finally, we learned last week that French president Nicolas Sarkozy — much like his current wife and one ex-wife — is a former model. A young Sarkozy appears in a Bonux detergent ad from 1967 that has just surfaced. His father, Pal Sarkozy de Nagy-Bocsa, worked as an illustrator for Bonux at the time. Way to embarrass the kid, dad!

Best of BrandFreak: Could single men sue Axe?

You had to wonder if and when this was going to happen. AdFreak’s sister blog, BrandFreak, last week reported on a weird story coming out of India, in which it was claimed that a 26-year-old man had decided to sue Unilever’s Axe deodorant (called Lynx over there) after using the product for a long time and finding himself still unable to get a girlfriend. “I’ve been using it for seven years, but no girl came to me,” he supposedly told the U.K.’s Daily Mail. Such failure, of course, is wildly at odds with the Axe ad campaign globally, which suggests ladyfolk are powerless to resist Axe-using men. The story sounded a bit too good to be true, and it turned out it was. A rep at Axe said she had determined the story was a hoax, but added: “The joke itself is very much in line with our brand tone-playful, with a wink and a nudge.” Makes you wonder where the story really came from.