Ad of the Day: Liquid-Plumr Gives Housewives More Erotic Cleaning Fantasies

'When you need it now'

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Clogged drains are gross. Just think about the combination of things that go into rendering your tub drain completely nonfunctional: enough hair to knit a child's sweater, some soap scum, a load of unidentifiable brown goo. And the process of actually removing said clog? So not sexy.

… Or is it? In the grand pornographic tradition of the housewife fantasy, brands like Clorox's Liquid-Plumr are attempting to spice up otherwise mundane products with ads in which hunky men (hey, Kraft Zesty Guy!) promise to add some excitement to your daily routine.

Liquid-Plumr—which admittedly has an advantage with the whole "cleaning out your pipes" double entendre—first tested this idea with DDB California's spot for its "Double Impact" formula (obviously, there were two hunky would-be plumbers involved). Agency and client are now going back for seconds with this ad for the brand's new "Urgent Clear" product.

In the ad, a woman with pipe-cleaning needs of her own spots a bottle of Urgent Clear at the supermarket. Immediately, she starts fantasizing about a sexy handyman (named Peter, naturally) showing up at her house. She's preparing to walk out the door and has no time, she insists—but he declares that he only needs seven minutes to get the (plumbing) job done. Not a lot left to the imagination with this one.

Jason Elm, chief creative officer of DDB California, says there's at least some instructive value to the spot, though. "Note that we still clearly show the drain-clearing benefits and product demo," he says. "We just built the fantasy around it."


Client: The Clorox Company

Product: Liquid-Plumr Urgent Clear

Spot: "Quickie"

Vice President, Marketing: Heidi Dorsin

Agency: DDB, San Francisco

Chief Creative Officer: Lisa Bennett

Director of Production: Frank Brooks

Group Creative Director: Chad Ackley

Associate Creative Director, Art Director: Kelly McCullough

Associate Creative Director, Copywriter: Billy Leyhe

Agency Producer: Jessica Manning

Account Director: Rebecca Hines

Production Company: Biscuit Filmworks

Director: Clay Weiner 

Director of Photography: Marten Tedin

Executive Producer: Holly Vega

Line Producer: Lisa Stockdale

Editorial: Beast

Editor: Brian Lagerhausen

Visual Effects: Beast Editorial

Visual Effects Artist: Dave Burghardt

Telecine: Company 3

Colorist: Bob Festa

Sound Design, Audio Mixing: M Squared Productions

Sound Designer: Mark Pitchard

Music Supervision: Maxwell Gosling

Music Company: Little Ears Music

@adweekemma Emma Bazilian is Adweek's features editor.