Recycling a Big Name, The Monster Market, New Gooberwear, Etc.

What’s to become of Cordiant? We’re speaking of the name, not the holding company. While the Cordiant agencies will be going their separate ways, that’s no reason to let such a euphonious name fall into disuse. An asset like that ought to be sold to some other company, where it could give years of service. Among potential buyers that come to mind is Chrysler, for a zippy compact to be sold under the Plymouth Cordiant marque. (Or is there already a Plymouth Cordiant?) A vendor of cordless phones might want it as a catchy mnemonic for ‘cord it ain’t.’ An accordion company with global ambitions could hardly do better, of course. Or a manufacturer of electrical gear that has outgrown its original name might well trade up to Extension Cordiant.

Frankenstein is no newcomer to advertising, but he gives one of his best performances to date in a spot for Servistar/Coast to Coast home centers. As the spot opens, a jolt of electricity dislodges a bolt from Frankenstein’s neck. The bolt then rolls through an open grating, where even the monster’s arms can’t reach it. At this point, a deadpan voiceover asks: ‘Need hardware?’ And it mentions a sale coming up at the client’s stores. As the spot ends, our hero is using a power tool to affix a new bolt. Pittsburgh-based Marc is the agency for the effort.

Every dog has his 15 minutes of fame, as the saying goes, but some get it the hard way. Using a worried-looking basset hound to make sure people remember the client’s name, an ad for Bassett Furniture (via Trone Advertising of Greensboro, N.C.) assures customers of the company’s readiness to jump through hoops. No actual hoops were harmed in the creation of this photo.

This week’s honors for Best Ad Aimed at Potential Fugitives goes to STA Travel. Travel may or may not broaden the mind, but it can put some distance between you and your creditors. This positioning for the student-travel firm comes via Big Bang Idea Engineering of Seattle.

‘Casualization’ has surely run amok when Mr. Peanut succumbs to it. Even as people began showing up at the office in attire that wouldn’t have been seen at a dog fight 20 years earlier, you could count on Mr. Peanut–impeccable in top hat, monocle and spats–to uphold standards. Until now, that is. A spot for Planters (via Foote, Cone & Belding in New York) shows a shipwrecked man on a desert island, sent into raptures when cases of Planters Peanuts wash ashore. Sustaining the tropical-island theme, the spot closes with a shot of Mr. Peanut in loud Hawaiian-print shorts and beach sandals. Et tu, Mr. Peanut? Et tu?

How to gauge the ‘plumpness’ of ravioli? This issue arose in a challenge to a spot claiming Franco-American ravioli is plumper and firmer than Chef Boyardee. In adjudicating the dispute, the National Advertising Division of the Better Business Bureau told of methodology used in evaluating the claims. On the matter of plumpness, Franco-American compared the depth of the ‘pillow’ section of the ravioli. ‘The pillow measurements were made from the top of the ravioli pillow to the bottom of the ravioli using a vernier caliper,’ the NAD reported. As for firmness, that attribute was calculated ‘by inserting a probe into the different samples of the two heated products and determining the amount of force needed to fully extend the probe through the pasta part of the ravioli.’ Laymen might say the evaluation of ravioli isn’t rocket science. But it turns out to be remarkably close, eh?

Copyright ASM Communications, Inc. (1997) ALL RIGHTS RESERVED