Thursday, Sept. 17: Live from Amsterdam, a city where nothing is verboten and where I'm finishing up this column, they truly can't understand what this "Clinton mess" is all about. But back to the business at hand: There were a lot of good commercials (along with some dreadful ones) on the August reel--with the humorous ads being the most memorable. When watching this much advertising in one sitting, I'm grateful for the spots that made me laugh.
Apple iMac: The ads are simple. Their message is clear. The machine is beautiful. All the new work for Apple is lovely. That said, when buying a new computer this summer, I replaced my old Mac with a PC. My computer-genius son insisted. When visiting colleges with him this past spring and summer, I noticed the predominant computer was a PC, by about 85 percent. That's why, when I see Apple advertising, no matter how good, I keep wondering: Will it matter?
Nikec: I have no idea why these guys are on Mount Everest. I have no idea why they're playing golf or what it is they are advertising. And I think it's dƒclassƒ asking the Sherpas to caddy. The air is thin. I am confused. Need oxygen.
Trojan Shared Sensation and LifeStyle Condoms: Oh great! We finally get to make condom commercials, and this is what we get. A condom commercial should be funny. It should be naughty. It should be sexy. Why can't we make condom commercials like the Europeans do? Or Bill Clinton?
Adidas: OK, from the get-go, I'm biased on these. I'm a huge Yankee fan. This has been a big year for them. And this campaign is one of the most original, most enjoyable, most memorable of the year. And if the Yankees do take the series (we all know they'll get there), I believe these Yankee guys (pictured, top) will have been somewhat responsible.
Calvin Klein Contradictions for Men: Who is this guy and why is he saying these things? He says he wants to be a gentleman, and that means to be gentle and a man. He says he wants to be wanted, not needed. He says these things while sitting backwards in a chair, with his T-shirt tucked in. This guy really needs to get out to the ballpark more often. Maybe hang out with the Yankee guys, have some pretzels, drink some beer. Lots of beer. Develop a gut. Take the T-shirt out of his pants. Sit on a chair the right way. And for God's sake, son, keep your silly little thoughts to yourself, or the Yankee guys will take you out back and roll you.
Hanes Her Way: A terrific song. Beautiful imagery (pictured, left). I could watch a gorgeous woman bounce on a trampoline in her underwear all day. And after me and the Yankee guys take care of that Calvin Klein clown, maybe we will.
Airwalk: I remember seeing this for the first time. The kid gets his arm torn off while being chased by a car, and I'm thinking, "My God, they tore his arm off!" Then he gets his leg torn off, and I'm going, "My God, they tore his leg off!" Then I remember saying, "Cool."
Visa: This is another great commercial in the most consistently superior of campaigns we've seen in years. It's well performed, has a great song and makes me feel Steve Young's pain. I wonder how they'll handle it if Jerry Rice gets hurt again this season. I have a suggestion. Use the Yankee guys.