Best Spots are selected by Adweek editors from commercials breaking on broadcast and cable television. Call Nancy Sobel at (212) 536-6453 to submit reels or to order this month's collection.
The Best Spots section is compiled by Mark Lang.
With no one to hang with, a dog plays fetch the stick by himself. After a couple impressive tosses, our lonely hero barks out, "Where is everybody?" Did BA hire Astro for the VO?
Title: Speaking Dog
Agency: M&C Saatchi, London
Creative Director: Simon Dicketts
Art Director: David Graham-Dao
Copywriter: Angela Jones
Agency producer: Estella Alvarez
Production co.: Mighty
Director: Brian Griffin
Editorial: Cutting Edge
Music: Joe & Co.
Showing scenes of family bliss, this spot asks: "Are rich people taller than the rest of us? Are their loved ones more deserving of an air bag? Was the sun created solely for their enjoyment?" Buick says the Century, for less than 20K, is a "luxury car for everyone." Think VO guy Willem Dafoe drives one?
Agency: McCann-Erickson, Troy, Mich.
Creative director: Jonathan Cranin
Art director: K.J. Bowen
Copywriter: Jenny Sandbank
Agency producer: Amy Wagoner
Production co.: Mars Media
Director: Peggy Sirota
Editorial: Inside Out Editorial
Music: O'Henry Studio
COOL FROM NESTEA
An angry skeleton walks into a convenience store and heads for the cold drinks. As he downs a Cool tea, his bones grow ice. He's a snowman! On the way out, he grabs a carrot and gives himself a nose job. Never pays the clerk a penny. Gotta love Frosty's demented twin.
Agency: Fallon McElligott, Minneapolis
Creative director: Dion Hughes
Art director: Bobby Appleby
Copywriter: Rob McPherson
Agency producer: Rob Van
Production co.: bolexbrothers
Director/editor: Dave Borthwick
The Barney-like song goes: "For all we've been through. It's you for me and me for you. I'll always be your friend " All the while, two guys in animal costumes - a rabbit and penguin - proceed to whomp the tar out of each other, culminating in the bunny getting tossed off a building. As a former patron, Best Spots can confirm the gym's "No judgements" tagline. Do pierced body parts enhance aerobic performance?
Agency: In-house/DDB Needham, N.Y.
Art director: Marc Schattner
Copywriters: Martin Dix, Erhan Erdem
Agency producer: Candy Diepraam
Production co.: Half Baked Productions
Director: Kenan Moran
Editor: Tom Scherma, Consulate
Music: Jonathan Pointer, Songs for Cheap
DAIRY MANAGEMENT (CHEESE)
An elderly dude pulls out all the stops - shoeshine, tie, mouthwash, flowers - for his big date. Before long, he's making out with his soulmate: a cow. The power of cheese is undeniable, but Best Spots prefers sucking face with a half-pound bacon cheeseburger.
Agency: Leo Burnett, Chicago
CD/copywriter: Rory Monaghan
Art director: Ben Hershey
Agency producer: Mike Antonucci
Production co.: Propaganda
Director: David Kellogg
Editors: John Murray, Tom Muldoon, Glenn Martin, Jim Hutchins, Nomad
The evil Dr. Cravin - a toy action figure - intercepts a Domino's pizza call. Dr. C, who sounds an awful lot like The Simpsons' Mr. Burns, drives (yes, drives) to the house in the Crustmobile, calling himself "the deep-dish delinquent." Of course, doll boy is crushed in the end. But he'll be back (insert diabolical laugh).
Agency: Campbell Mithun Esty, Minneapolis
Executive CD: John Hurst
Creative director: Rob Wallace
Copywriter/director: Trent Farr
AD/director: Darryl Kluskowski
Agency producer: Debra Lustig
Production co.: Johnson Burnett
"Let's keep it light. Want to go for 5?" says a runner. "Would that be minutes or miles?" asks his friend. The pair go 50 yards before jogger No. 2 wimps out, complaining about his shoes. Hey, who can't relate to that? Sometimes you just can't do it.
Title: Trail Run
Agency: Deutsch, New York
Executive CD: Kathy Delaney
Art director: Craig Markus
Copywriter: Bryan Black
Agency producer: Randy Cohen
Production co.: Hungry Man
Director: John O'Hagan
Editor: Mary Alice Williams,
Music: Peter Lopez, corncob
The letterbox campaign rolls on. In this ad, two disgruntled yuppies write a we-quit email to their boss because he hasn't equipped them with Thinkpads. Just as they hit send, the tech guy arrives to set up their new laptops.
Title: Flame Mail
Agency: Ogilvy & Mather, New York
Creative director: Chris Wall
Associate CD: Dan Burrier
Art director: Chris Curry
Copywriter: Brendan Gibbons
Executive producer: Lee Weiss
Assistant producer: Oritte Bendory
Production co.: Pytka
Director: Joe Pytka
Editor: Adam Liebowitz, Crew Cuts
Part of the "Buddy Lee: Man of Action" campaign, this ad portrays the doll as protector of the city. Buddy, who looks a little like Chuckie (Child's Play) after chemo, is a '60s Lee Jeans "spokesdoll" on the comeback trail in the '90s.
Agency: Fallon McElligott, Minneapolis
CDs: Harvey Marco, Peter McHugh
Art director: Andy Azula
Copywriter: Greg Hahn
Agency producer: Monika Prince
Production co.: Satellite
Director: Spike Jonze
Editor: Eric Zumbrunnen, Spot Welders
Music: Elias Music
A bald guy in his grunders opens the fridge, takes out a cold one, puts it on a table and starts dancing. Why? 'Cause the bottle cap reads: "Twist to Open." Yo, Dick: That's not exactly the Twist he's doing. More like the Skew.
Title: Weird Guy
Agency: Fallon McElligott, Minneapolis
Creative director: Bill Westbrook
Art director: Harvey Marco
Copywriter: Dean Buckhorn
Agency producer: Jack Nelson
Production co.: HSI
Director: Gerard deThame
Editor: John Murray, Nomad
Music: Elias Associates
NEBRASKA PUBLIC POWER DISTRICT
"Funny how some people just can't let go of their air conditioner," says the VO. It's true: A guy grills on his old AC and a woman dries her hair with hers. Why? Because they've replaced their AC with an NPPD electric heat pump.
Title: New Uses
Agency: Bailey Lauerman & Associates, Lincoln, Neb.
Creative director: Carter Weitz
Art director/producer: John Hayden
Copywriter/producer: Frances Kepes
Production co.: Great Plains Motion Picture Co.
Director: Steve Thiesfeld
"Ladies and gentlemen, please fashion your seat belts," says stewardess Morgan Fairchild, as the Old Navy jet prepares to land. The fashion jokes get a little trite after 20 seconds, but Joan Collins saves the day with the immortal line: "Woof." And you thought it was hard to get into Adweek.
Creative director: Dennis Leggett
Sr. dir., copywriter: Anne Buhl
Copywriter: Robbie Finnigan
Producer: Francine Weiner
Production co.: Original Films
Director: John Huba
Editor: Charley Bender
Music: Pomposello Productions
PARK NICOLLET CLINIC
"How are you doing today?" asks the jeweler. "Really bad," says the customer. "Eyes, ears, nose, throat, all bad When I swallow, it just makes me want to cry." Then she sneezes in the guy's face. Want someone to listen to your troubles? Go to Park Nicollet.
Agency: Clarity Coverdale Fury, Minneapolis
CD/art director: Jac Coverdale
CD/copywriter Jerry Fury
Broadcast production: Jenee Schmidt
Production co.: Crossroads
Director: Steve Eshelman
Editor: Tony Fisher, Fisher Edit
POWER WHEELS BY FISHER-PRICE
Charlotte meets Oliver in this Dating Game parody. She likes pizza, goldfish and Power Wheels; he digs spaghetti, spiders and Fisher-Price. The kids are cuter than cute, and the drive toys look like fun. Gosh, Best Spots would love to play with the toys now.
Title: Charlotte Meets Oliver
Agency: Gardner, Geary, Coll & Young, S.F.
CD/art director: John Coll
AD/copywriter: Tom Rosenfield
Copywriter: Christi Anderson
Agency producer: Nikki Di Franco
Production co.: Fuse Films
Director: Domenic Mastrippolito
Editor: Mauro Camoroda, FilmCore
Repulsed by all things Godzilla, Best Spots still likes the little dog. In this ad, he tries to trap the lizard. Aye chihuahua! With Godzilla tanking it, the mutt should have cut a tie-in deal with Mulder and Scully.
Agency: TBWA Chiat/Day, Venice, Calif.
CDs: Chuck Bennett, Clay Williams
Art director: Scott Bailey
Copywriter: Brian Wimer
Agency producer: Brigette Whisnant
Production co.: Morton Jankel Zander
Director: Rocky Morton
Editor: Glenn Martin, Nomad
Music: Nicholas Pike, Groove Addicts
To stay healthy, an older woman swims in the lake every day and takes her blood-pressure medicine. The VO: "If you're taking a prescription Tylenol is least likely to have drug interaction." A smart, simple message.
Title: The Lake
Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi
Healthcare Connection, New York
CD/copywriter: Muffy Clarkson
ACD/art director: Peter Bevacqua
Exec. producer: Christine Cacace
Music director: Eric Korte
Production co.: Dektor Films
Director: Leslie Dektor
Editor: Keith Salmon, Lost Planet
Music: Ray Foote, Big Foote
U.S. POSTAL SERVICE
Imitating Elvis, a groovin' cub sings "Teddy Bear." A simple idea, this spot is fun to listen to and to watch - all the while promoting the USPS' new collector series. Can't wait for the "Hunka, hunka, burning love" stamp.
Title: Teddy Bear
Agency: DraftWorldwide, Chicago CD/copywriter Mike Doyle
Art director: Scott Peterson
Agency prod.: Leslie Raugstad-Brown
Production co.: Calabash/Film Workers
Director: DraftWorldwide USPS Creative Team
Editor: Tom Kedzuch, Red Car
UTZ POTATO CHIPS
With extreme angst, a Frenchman repeatedly asks "Pourquoi?" Because he can't get Utz potato chips in France, that's why. Hey, anything that disses the French is aces with Best Spots.
Agency: Gray Kirk/VanSant, Baltimore
CD/copywriter: Jeff Millman
Art director/director: Ken Dennison
Prods.: Pam Poertner, Kelly Logan
Production co.: Big Picture
Editor: Rip Lambert, Producers Video
This visually stunning spot breathes life into billboards, print ads and mannequins. It mixes swaths of colors with black and white, and varies film speeds. A joy to watch, it's a work of art.
Agency: Messner Vetere Berger McNamee Schmetterer, New York
Creative director: Ron Berger
Group CD: Michael Lee
Art director: Phil Silvestri
Copywriter: Rich Roth
Agency producer: Tom Meloth
Production co.: radical media
Director: Jeff Darling
Editor: Simon Brewster, A52
"Sometimes, I wake up with that not-so-fresh feeling," says a way-too-perky woman. Now, though, she uses Z-100, in original pads and new spray. No doubt the feminine-hygiene theme plays well with the Morning Zoo's prepubescent listeners.
Agency: Nerve Inc., Portland, Ore.
Creative director: Craig Opfer
Art director: Astephan Alm
Copywriter: Jimmy Gilmore
Agency producer: Gina Bevilacqua
Production co.: Circle Productions
Director: June Manton
Editor: Mathew Griffiths
Sound design: Dick & Rogers
With a poodle on his trail, a sweaty man escapes into a bar, where a few guys who look like products of an incestuous relationship hang out. While the running dude orders a Zima, the dog sneaks in, bites him and turns into a piece of dry ice. Chill, Fido.
Title: Mad Dog
Agency: Foote, Cone & Belding, San Francisco
Creative director: Brian Bacino
Art director: Don Creed
Copywriter: Bob Dorfman
Senior producer: Jim Phox
Production co.: Palomar Pictures
Director: Breck Eisner
Editor: Hank Polonsky, Hank's Editorial
Music: Elias Music
Sound design: Brian Franklin, Franklin Media Sound Design Group