Preacher, Tommy John Would Like to Put a Ferret Down Your Shirt

By Erik Oster 

Following last year’s “The Big Adjustment” spot last year promoting the brand’s underwear, Austin agency Preacher is back to promote Tommy John’s line of undershirts.

As with its predecessor, the spot cartoonishly lampoons uncomfortable alternatives before presenting Tommy John as the answer you’ve been looking for. While in “The Big Adjustment” the problem was that the boys were unhappy, this time around its an uncomfortable, itchy undershirt. To bring the problem to life in “Undershirt Undoing,” Preacher stuffed ferrets down actors shirts and filmed them awkwardly trying to navigate situations such as making a golf putt, giving a political speech and performing a routine dentistry procedure.

The results are humorous,and if the approach the problem of an itchy undershirt a little too much, it does help the brand stand out in a category where that’s difficult. And hey, at least Preacher didn’t go with their original animal choice.

“Our first idea started with cats,” Preacher founder and CCO Rob Baird told AdFreak. “That lasted one presentation. Once we got serious about pursuing this idea, the combination of logistics of size and concern about cat lovers’ response to putting them under dress shirts made us move to other options. Ferrets were on a shortlist of players, including hamsters and snakes. But once we found out they love to burrow and then Googled ferrets for a visual refresher—seeing their aggressive little faces—they seemed perfect.”

Aggressive. Little. Faces. Somehow we’re guessing the actors thought that less than ideal.

“Usually, once the ferrets were tucked inside the shirts for several fast-action takes, they wanted to sleep,”added Baird. “Our animal handlers had plenty of treats tucked throughout our actors’ shirts to keep them moving and causing annoyance for our guys. The smart ones usually ate their treats and found the quickest exit—usually through a neck or button opening in the shirt. We have to give our actors a lot of credit for playing it so well and staying calm—the discomfort was real. Fortunately, we had no bites.”

The agency also created a behind-the-scenes video, which those of you aren’t afraid of ferrets can check out below.
Client: Tommy John
Chief Executive Officer: Tom Patterson
Chief Marketing Officer: Josh Dean
Senior Art Director: Fawad Khan
Producer: Allison Wicke
Director of Social Media: Monica Fineis
Agency: Preacher
Chief Creative Officer: Rob Baird
Copywriter: Mark Svartz
Executive Producer: Stacey Higgins
Agency Producer: Katie Stoller
Assistant Agency Producer: Zach Tavel
Brand Director: Amanda VanAntwerp
Chief Executive Officer: Krystle Loyland
Chief Strategy Officer: Seth Gaffney
Senior Strategist: Carson Mobley
Business Affairs: Miiko Martin
Production Company: Smuggler
Executive Producers: Patrick Milling Smith, Brian Carmody, Jacqui Wilkinson
Director: Neil Harris
Head of Production: Andrew Colon
Line Producer: Claire Jones
Director of Photography: Tat Radcliffe
Production Services (Lithuania): Nordic Productions
Services Producer: Greta Kleine
Edit House: Cartel
Executive Producer: Lauren Bleiweiss
Head of Production: Meagan Carroll
Producer: Dale Nicholls
Editor: Andy McGraw
Assistant Editors: Matt Berardi, Micah Chase
Music: Black Iris
Track: Misery
Composer: Trey Pollard
Executive Creative Director: Justin Bailey
Creative Director: Rich Stine
Executive Producer: Jon Spencer
Senior Producer: Amanda Patterson
Mix: Lime
Sound Engineer: Rohan Young
Assistant Sound Engineer: Ben Tomastik
Finish House: Cartel
Senior Flame Artist: Wes Waldron
Color: Ntropic
Colorist: Marshall Plante