Let's agree on this: Men are fairly stupid. Particularly young men. Not about everything—they can recall the most esoteric fantasy-baseball statistics in alarming detail, and quote entire scenes from The Simpsons. But when it comes to the more mainstream elements of human existence—say, for example, work, romance and social life—more often than not they fail utterly.
If you're a guy who can't laugh at this, what can you laugh at? In the past few years, more and more men have been not laughing at ads that paint them as fools—most recently, the Huggies campaign positioning fathers as the ultimate "challenge" to their babies. Pennsylvania dad Chris Routly led an outcry against that work, which Kimberly-Clark eventually agreed to alter. Was it really that insulting? Can't we agree to chuckle over the reality that despite the admirable efforts of millions of committed, competent dads, it's moms, on the whole, who still have that certain ineffable, instinctual edge when it comes to child-rearing?
Thankfully, some marketers are refusing to be kinder and gentler to men, and are reaping rewards in the process. Because the truth is, guys enjoy seeing other guys portrayed as fools—whether or not they actually consider themselves to be a fool or not. Look at AMV BBDO's Guinness work for St. Patrick's Day this year—that wonderful two-minute-plus spot with the guys shambling around the countryside, needing literally to be herded into a bar, lest they be overwhelmed by the most rudimentary of distractions. It's no accident that this ad is already the most-viral Guinness spot of all time.
Which brings us to March Madness—a time of year not universally renowned for its high incidence of male intelligence—and the new Buffalo Wild Wings campaign from Fallon in Minneapolis. In three new spots, men are asked which month they'd agree to lose if they could have more March. In each case, the guy sheepishly chooses a month that hangs over him like a black cloud, because of some idiotic act he'd committed during said month. Then we get flashbacks to the series of unfortunate events—the most amusing of which involves a New Year's celebration, a champaign cork, and a guy with an eye patch.
The work, extended online at MoreMarch.com, is simple and silly and well done. It's not revolutionary stuff, but it doesn't have to be—and it surely gets a laugh out of guys during breaks in the NCAA basketball games. It's perfect for a sports bar like Buffalo Wild Wings, where not taking yourself too seriously is the whole point. A game, some wings, some beer—and ads that don't worry about offending you. That's all men really want out of March Madness, anyway.
Now, who's going to start the petition to have these ads pulled?
Client: Buffalo Wild Wings
Agency: Fallon, Minneapolis
Chief Creative Officer: Darren Spiller
Art Director: Mike Fetrow
Copywriter: Dean Buckhorn
Head of Integrated Production: Corey Esse
Producer: Matt Polski
Production Company: MJZ
Director: Craig Gillespie
Executive Producer: Emma Wilcockson
Producer: Deb Tietjen
Editing Company: Final Cut Edit
Executive Producer: Saima Awan
Editor: Eric Zumbrunnen
Audio Engineer: Jeff Payne, Eleven
VFX Company: A52
Executive Producer: Luisa Murray
VFX Supervisor: Heather Johann
Other Fallon credits:
Chief Marketing Officer: Rob Buchner
Account Director: Mindy Gallimore
Account Manager: Kristina Nagle
Director of Business Affairs: Brendan Lawrence