Mike Hughes president/creative director, the Marti

Mike Hughes president/creative director, the Martin agency

The economy and the fear in the marketplace are reminiscent of the time after the creative revolution of the ’60s. Suddenly, everyone’s saying we need to be radically more responsible. More hard-hitting. More retail. Our only salvation will be if someone comes out of this wilderness the way the Scali and Ally agencies did in the ’70s—with go-for-the-jugular advertising that’s smart, tough and every bit as creatively inspired as the great work that came before. And speaking of retail, unless the current panic screws things up, retail will be the category to be in. Remember when agencies looked down at retail? Name the agency that wouldn’t be proud to represent Target, Gap, Ikea, Amazon or a half-dozen others today. The best advertising will continue to get less cynical. Gap dancers, Target rockers, the “Whassup?” guys, all the talking animals—they’re lovable. I bet we see more of these characters. We can only hope they’re not sappy.