Puma “After Hours Athlete”

Finally, a sneaker campaign I can relate to. At least in theory. This Puma work from Droga5 celebrates the “after-hours athlete,” the one that would rather take a 5 a.m. cab than a 5 a.m. run. A 90-second Web film directed by Ringan Ledwidge introduces the approach with a manifesto-type spot that sets up the concept of “Puma Social.” There’s images of late-night bowling, darts and pool games, with an all-too-serious voiceover describing the challenge of “surviving buzz kills, third wheels, cock blocks and cabs in the rain.” The strategy is smart, the writing strong … but the execution feels a little less real and playful than it probably should. Casting is a bit too predictable with its twentysomething hipsters; but then again, Puma is selling style and attitude, and the ads have got plenty of that. –-Eleftheria Parpis