This spec tale of a kid who comes home to an empty house and finds a note that his parents have left because he hogged the Ovaltine sets my nerves on edge. Yes, it's over the top and not meant to be taken too seriously. Yet, it stirs up the universal fear of abandonment, and positions Ovaltine 180 degrees away from its traditional "comfort" zone. Instead of providing chocolaty reassurance, it associates the brand with discomfort and anxiety. What marketer wants consumers reacting to one its commercials by phoning their therapists? If Nesquik cared, they could rapid-respond with a spot where the bunny promises to stick with kids no matter what. Quik tastes better anyway. Maybe if Ovaltine reduced its sugar content, those parents in the spot wouldn't have been so hyper and run off.
—Posted by David Gianatasio