Creative: Best Spots – October

Adidas: “Fireman”
As an apartment building burns, firemen coax a woman to throw her dog down to them. Resistant at first, she finally heaves the pooch out the window–and a fireman makes a nice running catch. As the crowd cheers, the fire guy performs an end-zone dance that would make Deion Sanders proud–then he spikes the dog into the turf. “Some guys were just made for football” is the tagline. Yes, it’s an old joke (the mutt substitutes for a baby), but the execution for this Adidas/ Tampa Bay Buccaneer campaign is top-notch.
Agency: Leagas Delaney, S.F. CDs: Harry Cocciolo, Sean Ehringer Art dir.: Chris Toland CW: Steve Morris Agency prod.: Lisa Dee Twinman Prod. co.: Five Union Square Dir.: Tom Schiller Ed.: Rick Lobo, Green Composer: Andy Newell, Earwax
Apple imac: “E-mail”
This simple, well-written ad casts Jeff Goldblum as the guy next door. He talks about “a big party going on these days. Everyone’s saying, ‘What’s your email address?’ ‘I don’t have an email’ You feel left out, a bit confused; it’s too expensive or something.” With the user-friendly iMac, he continues, “you’re emailing everybody. You’re part of the party. It’s
as easy as licking a stamp.” Goldblum comes off naturally, but Best Spots still wonders how he attained mega-star status. The guy’s got negatives on somebody.
Agency: TBWA/Chiat/Day, Playa del Rey, Calif. CDs: Lee Clow, Ken Segall Art dir.: Susan Alinsangan CW: Neal Hughlett Agency prod.: Michelle Burke Assist. prod.: Thomas
Dunlap Prod. co.: Coppos Films Dir.: Mark Coppos Ed.: Brad Wetmore, Jigsaw Music: Asche & Spencer
auction universe: “church”
“Bless me, Father, for I have sinned. I sold my wedding band for a baseball card,” says the confessing sinner. “Which card?” asks the priest. “1956 Mickey Mantle” is the reply, causing the padre to say: “I’ll give you $50, $60, $70. Your wedding band can’t be that expensive, not with your gambling problem.” A woman waiting to confess gets into the bidding, along with an altar boy, hand in the collection basket. offers 24-hour-a-day deals. A former altar boy, Best Spots never reached into the till. The wine, however, was another story.
Agency: The Romann Group, N.Y. CD: Gad Romann Art dir.: Marta Ibarrondo CW: Aimee Heller Agency prod.: Steffi Binder Prod. co.: Dirs.: Will Speck, Josh Gordon Ed.: Julie Drazen Music: Vinnie Fugere, Kamen Audio
british airways: “musical chairs”
School kids play musical chairs, and their reactions to the game “predict” what occupations they might hold as adults.
During the game, a philosopher moralizes, an actress pouts, a critic sighs, a banker counts and a CEO rants–which leads “Rebecca” to give up her seat to the angry pupil. The young girl–who “naturally puts [herself] out for others”–will one day work for BA. The ad is clever, filmic and politically incorrect. Though the ad never states that Rebecca will be a stewardess, the inference is obvious. So much so, the Adweek cleaning lady is still wiping the blood off the walls in the Best Spots meeting room.
Agency: M&C Saatchi, N.Y. CD/CW: Simon Dicketts Art dir.: Pete Gatley Agency prod.: Bruce McKelvie Prod. co.: D Films Dir.: Stuart Douglas Ed.: John McManus Music: Paul Hart, Joe Campbell
burger king: “deja vu”
1973: Wearing leisure suits, two big-haired guys walk into a Burger King and order a Whopper without pickles. Three counter girls sing the “Have it your way” song. 1998: Same two dudes, balding and graying, still clothed in polyester, order onion rings instead of fries. Same three counter girls sing “Have it your way.” It’s an amusing ad, but 25 years as a Burger King employee? Paging Dr. Kevorkian
Agency: Ammirati Puris Lintas, N.Y. Co-CDs: Tom Nelson, Mark Johnson GCD/art dir.: Marrcus Jaacson GCD/CW: Jonathan Mandell Art dirs.: Clem McCarthy, Michele Raso, Frank Krimmel CWs: Frank Krimmel, Matthew Berger Agency prod.: Marcy Samsolo Prod. co.: Steve & Linda Horn Dir.: Steve Horn Ed.: Craig Warnick, Madhouse Music: David Horowitz Music
Campbell’s chunky soup: “quarterback sneak”
Carrying a tray of food, Denver running back Tyrell Davis says to QB John Elway: “Hey Johnny, there’s a new Chunky Soup, sweetie pie,” which he quickly changes to “sweaty guy.” The soup “is loaded with big chunks of baked potato,” he adds, “to fill my little Johnny bear right.” Elway is suspicious now and rips off Davis’ facial mask–it’s Elway’s mom! The ad is funny, and Davis is not only a natural on the gridiron but also one in front of the camera.
Agency: Young & Rubicam, New York Group CD: Marvin Waldman CD/art dir.: Eric Glickman CD/copywriter: Stephen Hersh Agency prod.: Jessica Millington Prod. co.: Celsius Films Dir./live action: Mark Tiedemann Dir./tabletop: Greg Ramsey Ed.: Vinny Pisciotta, Earth to Mars
delta air lines: “new york yankees”
While Delta employees wear “We’re #1” puffy hands, the VO says it all: “Congratulations to the best team in baseball–ever.” Not a bad team to latch onto, Delta: 125-50, .714 winning percentage, 11-2 in the postseason. Yes, the best ever. And Best Spots is tired of hearing about the ’76 Reds. Hey, Joe Morgan, Johnny Bench and Pete Rose: Yank this!
Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi, N.Y. Exec. CD: Roger Rowe CD/CW: Meg Rogers Art dir.: Dave Wasserman Agency prod.: Tom Dakin Prod. co.: The Observatory Dir.: Jeremy Warshaw Ed.: Jerry Freid, Red Car “toys of the valkyries”
To a Wagner score, a woman dons camouflage paint and clothing and heads into battle–at the toy store. She crawls, swings and screams her way through the aisles, past the carnage. This
ad makes Apocalypse Now look like a church bake sale.
Agency: Kalis & Savage, L.A. CD: Murray Kalis Art dirs.: Jeff Griffing, Jennifer Young CWs: Nancy Nelms, Adam Fleishman Agency prod.: Pat Garvin Prod. co.: Farmland Studios Dir.: Jeff Gorman Ed.: Gayle Grant, Exit “old man”
Visual: A Yoda-like dude walks slowly across the kitchen to get his prescription from the top shelf of the cabinet. Pills crash to the floor. Old guy groans. VO: “This man is 98 years old. Life is not so easy for him anymore. But every day he learns the importance of being independent and self-reliant. Thanks to this man: Meet Nick Felder. Nick ignores him and spends all day on” Vicious. Sick. Twisted. Perverse. Demented. A Best Spot.
Agency: Cliff Freeman & Partners, New York CD: Eric Silver Art director: Kilpatrick Anderson Copywriter: Kevin Roddy Agency producer: Nick Felder Production co.: MJZ Director: Rocky Morton Editor: Greg Dougherty, Homestead Editorial
hbo: “germs”
“To the world at large, we are merely germs, small insignificant bacterial growths,” says the head microorganism (George C. Scott) to his microbial legions. “Today, we stand united, knowing full well the glorious reward that awaits each and every one of us. Sure, we’re just germs. Looking out, I see more I see heroes.” Then the germic hordes all jump at the same time, pushing down the power button on the TV remote and turning on HBO. Let’s see: George C. Scott has gone from Oscar-winning general to chief bacterium over his lengthy career. How long before this guy starts filming blossom-onion info-mercials?
Agency: BBDO, N.Y. Chief creative officer: Ted Sann Exec. CD/copywriter: Michael Patti Sr. CD/art director: Don Schneider Agency prods.: Regina Ebel, Becky Friedman Production co: Pytka Dir.: Joe Pytka Editor: Sherri Margulies, Crew Cuts Music: David Horowitz Music
ibm: “insomnia”
Framed by its signature blue letterbox, this spot follows the adventures of a man who has to deal with an out-of-control garage-door system–which keeps opening and closing. The guy calls the company, but there’s no one there after hours. “Give your customers the help they need whenever they need it,” says the VO, pitching IBM’s self-service Web-site provider. Hey, Robert Oppenheimer, this is an electric garage-door opener. Just pull the freakin’ plug. Agency: Ogilvy & Mather, New York CD/art director: Susan Westre Art director: Per
Jacobson Copywriter: Kate Levin Agency producer: Lee Weiss Production co.: Pytka Director: Joe Pytka Editor: Adam Liebowwitz, Crew Cuts West Composer: Brian Banks, Ear to Ear Audio
johnsonville breakfast sausages: “sam”
A handsome young deaf boy signs to the camera, and subtitles translate: “Every Saturday, Mom makes breakfast. She always makes lots of noise and wakes up my hearing brothers. But I sleep until my nose wakes me up. Sausage! Breakfast!” Some might say that using a “handicapped” person to sell sausages is underhanded, but Best Spots bought it. The spot is sensitive and thought-provoking–it’s real life. A question for all Clarity Coverdale Fury staffers: Gov. Jesse “The Body” Ventura? What’s up with that?
Agency: Clarity Coverdale Fury, Minneapolis CD: Jac Coverdale Art director: Sharon Azula Copywriter: Kelly Trewartha Agency producers: Selanie Tyc, Jenee Schmidt Production co.: Dektor Films Director: Leslie Dektor Editor: Keith Salmon, Lost Planet Music: Eric Pilhofer
lee jeans: “twister”
As a tornado the size of Kansas bears down on a farmhouse, the family scoots into the cellar. “Where’s kitty? I left my kitty outside,” says a distraught little girl. Worry not. Buddy Lee, man of action, has no fear. Into the raging maelstrom he goes in search of that cat. Whoosh! Our hero is swept away like gift wrap on Christmas morning. “Wait, kitty’s not outside,” says the girl. But Buddy is, and he’s getting smushed. When the twister finally subsides, the Budster is impaled in a tree–his Lee jeans still in one piece.
Agency: Fallon McElligott, Minneapolis CDs: Harvey Marco, Peter McHugh Art dir.: Andy Azula Copywriter: Greg Hahn Agency producers: Monika Prince Production co.: Satellite Director: Spike Jonze Editor: Eric Zumbrunnen, Spot Welders Music: Elias Associates
lego mindstorms: “shower scene”
While a woman takes a shower, a tiny wheeled contraption rolls into the bathroom and toward the tub (it’s a nicely art-directed scene). VO: “With Lego Mindstorms and your computer, you can build and program robots that do what you want like capture special family moments–forever.” The “robot” is carrying a camera, which takes a picture of the naked woman. What a cool idea for a toy! Of course, Best Spots is waiting for the ultimate “invention toy” just in time for the millennium: Lego Nuclear Winter.
Agency: Ammirati Puris Lintas, N.Y. Co-CDs: Tom Nelson, Mark Johnson Group CD/art director: Roger Bentley Group CD/CW: Rob Feakins Art director: Azita Panahpour CW: Andy Manson Agency prod.: Eve Frumkin Prod. co.: Passport Films Dir.: Dan Nathan Ed.: Owen Plotkin, Editing Concepts Music: Amber
luden’s: “blind date”
Bouquet in hand, a guy nervously walks down a hallway looking for his blind date’s apartment. At the door, he tells himself, “Hey, you look great” and rings the bell. Sounding like Marge Simpson’s raspy-voiced sister Selma, the woman answers, “Just a minute. I’m freshening up. I can’t wait to meet you.” Well, our hero heads for the hills, leaving a trail of flower petals behind him. Of course, she’s beautiful–but who knew? Luden’s Wild Cherry cough drops would have saved the day. This blind-date stuff, Best Spots has been there and done that–only Luden’s wouldn’t have helped much.
Agency: DDB Needham, New York Executive creative director: Mike Rogers Art director: Billy Faraut Copywriter: Dan Cohen Agency producer: Walter Brindak Production co.: Tool of North America Director: Chris Hooper Editor: Owen Plotkin, Editing Concepts Sound design:
Howard Schwartz Recording
mirro/wearever: “drums”
Having a good old time, three folks bang away on Wearever pots and pans. Wearever is “nonstick cookware that’s safe with metal utensils–forks, spoons, spatulas, whisks and no scratches.” Not exactly “Live at Montreux,” this spot keeps the viewer watching and listening. It’s kind of a fun way to show off the “tough, new Silverstone surface with Scratch Guard.”
Agency: Cramer/Krasselt, Milwaukee Creative director: Neil Casey Art director: Kris Jenson Copywriters: Pat Knapp, Anwar Floyd-Pruitt Agency producer: Darryl Manuel Production co.: Fish Bone Film Director: Jay Vigon Editor: Greg Snyder, The Lookinglass Co. Music: RTG Music
nike: “running of the bulls”
The “What are you getting ready for?” campaign rolls on. In this spot, it’s the Denver Broncos versus the Pamplona Bulls in a battle to the death. While el toros gallop through the populated streets of Spain, the Broncos offensive linemen assume the position (football crouch) and block them from entering the bullfight arena, where a red-caped toreador awaits to torture and kill the animals for sport. Where the hell are the PETA people when you really need them?
Agency: Wieden & Kennedy, Portland, Ore. CDs: Hal Curtis, Chuck McBride Art director: Rob Palmer Copywriter: Canice Neary Agency producer: Jennifer Smieja Production co.: Director: Ralf Schmerberg Editor: Paul Norling, FilmCore Music: Jeff Koz
pepsi one: “parachute”
As a band of skydivers prepare to make their first jump, the instructor claims the men are about “to taste life for the first time.” Into the moving plane flies Cuba Gooding Jr., who asks, “Want to taste life? Then take a big swig of Pepsi One.” Parlaying his manic Oscar speech into advertising dollars, Gooding uses cans of Pepsi One to coax the divers out of the airplane. Let’s get this straight: Diet Pepsi tastes like colored water, but one magical calorie gives this new soft drink “the most awesome cola taste that’s bigger than the wild blue yonder.” Mother always said Best Spots should have gone into marketing.
Agency: BBDO, New York Chief creative officer: Ted Sann Exec. CD: Al Merrin CD/art director: Gill Witt CD/copywriter: Harry Woods Agency producer: Chris Donovan Production co.: Pytka Director: Joe Pytka Editor: Clayton Hemmert, Crew Cuts
pga: “baseball”
Hoping some of Major League Baseball’s magic will rub off, the Professional Golfers’ Association puts John Daly in a baseball-fueled spot. Daly comes up to “bat” for the Chicago White Sox with two outs in the bottom of the ninth. The announcer says the golfer’s average is “302–of course, that’s yards.” Daly proceeds to hit a home run, causing White Sox first baseman Frank Thomas to gush, “These guys are good.” Daly certainly is, and Best Spots wishes him well in his fight against alcohol abuse.
Agency: GSD&M, Austin, Texas CD/art director: Tom Gilmore Copywriter: Paul Hicks Agency producer: Kenny Grant Production co.: HSI Productions Director: Zach Snyder Editor: Jack Waldrip, charlieuniformtango Music: HUM
sony playstation: “monsters”
What better way to discuss Sir Dan, the skeletal knight/hero of a computer game titled MediEvil than to interview his chief antagonists. “Skinny guy, one eyeball disgusting,” says Frankenstein, drinking a beer in Budapest. “Odd fellow, clubbing zombies with chicken
drumsticks,” says the Mummy, clipping hedges in Bath, England. “Always babbling about honor and stuff so somebody woke you up from the dead to fight the forces of evil. Big deal!” says a Cambridge ghost, who looks way too much like Sid Caesar (now that’s scary). Throw in computer animation of Dan the Man and the spot plays well.
Agency: TBWA/Chiat/Day, Playa del Rey, Calif. CD: Jerry Gentile Art dir.: Mark Cohen Copywriter: Maya Rao Agency prod.: Debra Wittlin Assist. prod.: Geren Lockhart Prod. co.: Stiefel & Co. Director: Peter Darley Miller Editor: Dan Bootzin, Venice Beach Editorial
university of st. thomas: “basketball”
The scene is set: An athlete strolls into an airy, sunlit gymnasium. The kid looks like a stud basketball player, but he’s really a spastic stiff, missing every shot he chucks up. Meet Mark Reid, a graduate student with a 3.91 GPA in International Management at the Minnesota college. “Good thing he has his education to fall back on,” says the VO. Hey, too bad the kid isn’t a politics major. He could run against Gov. Jesse in 2002.
Agency: Clarity Coverdale Fury, Minneapolis CD: Jerry Fury Art director: Paul Stechschulte Copywriter: Kaelan Richards Agency producer: Jenee Schmidt Production co.: Young & Co. Director: Jim Lotter Editor: Mike Weldon, EditWG Music: Tom Lecher, Echo Boys
u.s. postal service: “are you ready?”
Putting Steve Miller Band’s “Fly Like an Eagle” to good use, this spot grooves on the upcoming holiday season. Of course, the U.S. Postal Service logo is an eagle and it shows up everywhere–along with diligent, peripatetic employees, no wackos in sight. Supers tell the story: “We’ve added a fleet of planes an army of trucks 40,000 more employees. We’re ready for the holidays. Are you?” The final shot: a kid opening a present on Christmas, because the Postal Service got it there on time. (Yes, there is a joke here, but in the spirit of the fast-approaching holidays, we’ll let it slide.)
Agency: Foote, Cone & Belding, New York Exec. CD: Ted Littleford Group CD/copywriter: Tom Rost GroupCD/art director: Saskia Mossel Sr. CDs: Michael Asphar, Tod Brubaker Sr. producer: Steven Friedman Production co.: Elma Garcia Films Director: Elma Garcia Editor: Billy Williams, Billy Williams Editorial Music: Steve Miller Band
yahoo: “monkey”
In an old-world country, an elderly couple slurps soup together. One small problem: The monkey on the guy’s shoulder keeps throwing crackers at the woman (don’t ask), who gets fed up and leaves. So the old fellow saunters over to his computer and looks up “women” on Yahoo. His email-order bride arrives and the monkey keeps throwing crackers during dinner–but she
has some sort of pterodactyl on her shoulder, which catches the broken saltines. Yahoo.
Agency: Black Rocket, San Francisco Art director: Steve Stone Copywriter: Bob Kerstetter Agency producer: Stacy McClain Production co.: Tool of North America Director: Erich Joiner Editor: Bob Frisk Music: Elias Associates
yoo-hoo: “cult”
After Brad drinks the last Yoo-Hoo, his girlfriend blows off all the other drinks in the fridge because “I want something chocolatey,” she says. “I’m going to run out and get a Yoo-Hoo.”
Unbeknownst to her, a delivery truck labeled Whacko Cult rolls down the street. The cult guy
kidnaps her at fingerpoint, leaving Brad in the lerch. “Buy any other beverage and you could be making a terrible mistake,” says the smarmy on-camera announcer. Growing up, Best Spots was never much of a Yoo-Hoo fan–but drank it anyway because Yogi Berra was the brand’s spokesman. Go Yanks!
Agency: Mad Dogs & Englishman, New York Creative director/ art director: Dave Cook Art director/copywriter: Neil Riley Director of broadcast production: Sandi Bachom Production co.: Hungry Man Director: Hank Perlman Editors: David Checel, Paul Norling, FilmCore