Mullen Rediscovers Punk Rock for Acura

By Patrick Coffee 

Sex Pistols “bassist” Sid Vicious’s decision to cover “My Way” was idiosyncratic for its time, but one has to wonder what the man would think of his tune’s appearance in a 2014 car ad if he’d somehow managed to live past 21.

This week Mullen LA debuted a new campaign for client Acura, and its central spot uses John Simon Ritchie’s take on the Sinatra standard to cast Acura’s engineers as bold rule-breakers.

Here’s the copy:

“We all go a little mad sometimes. But the end result isn’t always a car. It’s That Kind of Thrill.”

In this case, however, the end result was most definitely a car.

The campaign to promote the client’s new TLX model, which previously featured Jerry Seinfeld riffing on his “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” series, includes several shorter spots with less surprising musical accompaniment.

Here’s the TLX as an unnamed woman who’s “ready for some trouble”:

Finally, in the campaign’s most unusual spot, a gold-painted partygoer and a man dressed as a cat seem to embody “whatever Ludacris is doing right now”; the rapper himself is oddly absent from the scene.

The ads will begin running on TV and online on August 17th; the campaign will also include New Yorker cartoons and an ESPN partnership. Adweek tells us that the client plans to spend “significantly more” on this effort than its last Mullen campaign “Made for Mankind.