Captain Morgan Becomes Slightly Less of a Meathead

Here's a new commercial for Captain Morgan that's a little more high concept (with production values to match) than the usual frat-boy garbage that the rum brand has been pumping out for years. It's Anomaly's first work for the Diageo brand since winning global creative duties in December. You already know something's different because the ad was directed by Tom Hooper, who just won an Oscar for The King's Speech. (An Oscar winner doing Captain Morgan ads—someone was definitely drunk when they suggested that.) Anyway, it's not a wholesale rethink. The new ad still suggests the Captain has always preferred fun to fighting—a notion, by the way, that's not exactly supported by the historical record. Roused by the sound of gunfire, he emerges on deck, and rather than join the fight against a rival ship, he strips down and walks the plank—then somersaults in for a swim, much to the glee of both sides. It's a refinement to the brand, to make it, well, just a little more refined. A year ago, some modern-day slobs would have appeared on the ship inexplicably, probably doing shots upside down, while the Captain would have almost certainly done a cannonball.

@nudd Tim Nudd is a former creative editor of Adweek.