Famous Foes Square Off and the ‘Best Idea Wins’ in Ads for the 2015 Clios

Mandela vs. Verwoerd and more

In life, as in advertising, the best idea usually wins.

That simple insight informs McCann's campaign for the 2015 Clio Awards, featuring pairs of famous foes—Nelson Mandela and Hendrik Verwoerd, the architect of apartheid; Wile E. Coyote and Road Runner; Al Capone and J. Edgar Hoover; and angel and devil.

"It's just this simple idea that, throughout history, the best ideas always go right to the top," says Noel Cottrell, chief creative officer at Fitzgerald & Co. (part of McCann) who helmed the campaign, on the Clio site. "There are very few times when bad ideas have trumped. If you think about fashion, or politics, or life generally, the best ideas win. We think it's a great expression of that."

The campaign is alternately goofy and serious. Cottrell—who is from South Africa, and feels a strong connection to the Mandela-Verwoerd ad—says that flexibility is a strength.

"One image could be Nelson Mandela and Hendrik Verwoerd, another could be Wile E. Coyote and Road Runner, and still the best idea wins," he says. "I love that the campaign can stretch like that, from being sort of flip and funny to serious and controversial. I'm hoping we can carry on doing this."

More images below.

(Note: Clio and Adweek are both owned by affiliates of Guggenheim Partners.)


Agency: Fitzgerald & Co.

Chief Creative Officer: Noel Cottrell

Group Creative Director, Art Director: Ryan Boblett

Group Creative Director, Copywriter: Brad Harvey

Creative Director, Art Director: Andrew Whitehouse

Network Creative Manager: Eric Monnet

Director, Project Management: Cris Tally

Assistant Account Manager: Siera Williams

Senior Integrated Producer: Deb Archambault

Senior Vice President, Director, Talent Partnerships: Kimberly Kress

Talent Manager: Gordon Corte

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