Ad of the Day: This Great Hertz Ad Starts Off Sweet, Then Takes a Sharp Left Turn

Moving day blues

He took the tea kettle? Ouch, that Hertz!

This cute British spot from adam&eveDDB starts off sentimentally, as a middle-aged couple are saying goodbye to their son, who is moving out—with help from a Hertz rental van. But it soon becomes clear that the tears will come for another reason.

At least he left the kitchen sink.

"Yes it is a departure—deliberately so," agency creative director Steve Wioland tells Adweek. "We had a limited budget, so we had to do something to cut through. The team came up with a lovely insight: Stealing from parents is something many students are guilty of. We thought it was really funny."

Director Guy Shelmerdine employs an appealing documentary/home-movie style, and the understated, naturalistic performances are spot-on, helping to make "Cleaned Out" something more than the sum of its (purloined) parts.

"Key to the humor was getting the pace right," says Wioland. And the ad rewards replays because "there are a few things missing [from the house] that you may not notice on the first viewing."

Of course, the way things are today, that dude will probably move back home soon enough, reconnecting the satellite dish so he can watch TV all day long while chilling on a couch in the basement.


Client: Hertz

Vice President, Marketing, Pricing: Olivier Lecocq

Brand Communications Manager: Paul Wareham

Project: "Cleaned Out"

Agency: adam&eveDDB, London

Chief Creative Officer: Ben Priest

Executive Creative Directors: Ben Tollett, Richard Brim

Creative Directors: Matt Woolner, Steve Wioland

Copywriter: Frances Leach

Art Director: Christopher Bowsher

Planner: David Mortimer

Media Agency: Forward3D

Media Planner: James Ross

Production Company: Smuggler

Director: Guy Shelmerdine

Editor: Andy McGraw, Stitch

Postproduction: MPC

Audio Postproduction: Andy Stewart, String and Tins

@DaveGian David Gianatasio is a longtime contributor to Adweek, where he has been a writer and editor for two decades. Previously serving as Adweek's New England bureau chief and web editor, he remains based in Boston.