Schlage “Door”

In selling a highly useful new product, a demonstration is the obvious way to go. The catch is, consumers have seen so much of the genre that they’re primed to view such a commercial as hokey. This spot via TracyLocke for the Schlage LiNK System — a technology that, among other things, enables you to lock or unlock your door remotely by using a mobile phone or online computer — tries to deal with that problem by openly embracing the hokiness. The lead character here, who has deliberately locked himself out of his house, adopts a downright hucksterish tone as he instructs his far-away confederate to unlock the door by touching a key on the latter’s cell phone. And he sounds even more hokey when, as the door opens, he intones, “Like magic, but real!” Likewise when, at the tag end of the spot, we hear him saying (as if speaking to himself off-camera), “That was amazing. Do they sell this in stores? I would go to that store and buy this product.” Given the product’s intrinsic jazziness, I’m not sure all this self-mockery was quite called for on the commercial’s part. But it does engage the viewer’s attention and sets Schlage apart from brands that feel the need to indulge in unironic puffery. –Mark Dolliver