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Famous Footwear

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A slinky blonde in a black dress and heels cannonballs into a swimming pool. A couple enjoys a pillow fight, feathers flying, on their front porch. Three women dance atop a dinner table. A woman plays a guitar while pirouetting down a street. And so on. In better times, the relentless merry-making in this spot for Famous Footwear shoe stores (via Campbell Mithun, Minneapolis) might seem a little tedious. Amid the grimness of the ongoing and ongoing recession, though, the spot's stylishly presented cheerfulness makes for a nice respite from the prevailing spirit of the times. (One begins to sense why folks in the middle of the Depression enjoyed the glimpses movies gave them of a fantasy luxe life.) Interspersed with the images are onscreen supers urging viewers to "Make today" one of a number of fun things, including "playful," "frisky," "lyrical," "glamorous," "electric" and "lively." If one of these words doesn't appeal to you, another will. Moreover, by captioning the visuals, the text helps them seem neither random nor repetitive as the spot moves toward its final exhortation to "Make today famous." Will this make women rush out to the nearest Famous Footwear store to buy a pair of shoes they may or may not need? Hard to say. But if they are in the mood to go shoe-shopping, the spot will give them an effective nudge toward doing it at Famous Footwear. --Mark Dolliver