Ice T Talks Lemonade for Geico, and the TV Spot Isn’t Even the Best Part

Rapper punts 'the milk of the lemons'

Headshot of Angela Natividad

Geico has tapped Ice T as the latest cameo in its ongoing "It's Not Surprising" campaign. And while that may be a surprising follow-up to guys like Marco Polo, he breathes comical new life into the ongoing shtick. 

The rapper takes a break from his packed film and TV career to appear as The Martin Agency's latest punch line. The first ad has a pretty basic setup: Neighborhood regulars, passing by a lemonade stand, lean toward the kids and conspiratorially ask, "Is that iced tea?" "Nope, it's lemonade," they reply, with growing frustration. 

You're smart; you can see where this is going. 

The second piece of content, "The Art of the Squeeze," makes way better use of the man who brought us "I'm Your Pusher," all while mocking a tome of a similar name that's probably way less useful. Watch as Ice T uses lemonade to explain his nuanced and diverse negotiating arts, in steps as simple as making the drink itself. 

"It's said when life gives you lemons, you make lemonade. Then what do you do—drink it? Please. I say, you take that lemonade and you sell it to a thirsty fool at top dollar," he says. "Now pay attention and imma show you how to negotiate like a G, or like me, Ice T. This is priceless."

In Step 1, "Establish Dominance," he explains why it's key to keep eye contact, a trick that works even better with sunglasses. "This forces the customer to stare at themselves, and who's not gonna buy lemonade from themselves? It also helps you look cool—unless you're me, in which case, I always look cool." 

Ice T conveys a big-brother quality, and the time we spend with him is a solid payoff after the first ad, which feels like a tease in comparison. (Also, it's clear that lots of agencies have taken his advice on haggling.) 

The content comes with its own subsite and hashtag, #lemonadenoticet, which Ice T himself is gleefully punting on the socnets: 

That tweet isn't much, but coupled with all this tangy goodness, it's still more satisfying than the sponsored social missives from people who actually seem to be making a living that way. And if you want more, there's behind-the-scenes content, too, which manages to be just as shades-wearingly cool as the ads themselves. 

We leave you with Ice T's recap of the purpose of a director: "I always tell people acting's pretty easy because you have a guy called a director, and his job is to tell you what to fucking do, so you just do what he tells you to do." 


Client: Geico

Vice President, Marketing: Ted Ward

Director, Marketing Media Advertising: Bill Brower

Brand Team, Media Advertising, Sports Marketing Senior Manager: Melissa Halicy

Brand Team Senior Supervisor: Mike Grant

Brand Team Planners: Brighid Griffin, Tom Perlozzo

Brand Team Buyer: Julia Nass

Brand Team Coordinator: Tim Ware

Topic: Geico Savings TV – "It's Not Surprising" Campaign

First Run Date: Sept. 8, 2016

Media: Broadcast, Internet

Ad Name(s): "Ice T," "Ice T CTA," "Ice T :15," "Art of the Squeeze"

Agency: The Martin Agency

Chief Creative Officer: Joe Alexander

Group Creative Directors: Steve Bassett, Wade Alger

Creative Director: Sean Riley

Senior Copywriter: Ken Marcus

Art Director: Jesse Mitchell

Copywriter: Ryan Durr

Executive Producer: Brett Alexander

Broadcast Producer: Brian Camp

Associate Broadcast Producer: Coleman Sweeney

Junior Broadcast Producer: Sara Montgomery

Account Director: Ben Creasey

Account Supervisor: Allison Hensley

Account Executive: Jon Glomb

Account Coordinator: Allie Waller

Business Affairs Supervisor: Suzanne Wieringo

Financial Account Supervisor: Monica Cox

Senior Production Business Manager: Amy Trenz

Project Manager: Karen McEwen

Production Company: RadicalMedia

Director: Steve Miller

Executive Producer: Gregg Carlesimo

Head of Production: Frank Dituri

Producer: Jonathan Dino

Editing Company (Broadcast): MackCut

Editor: Ian MacKenzie

Assistant Editor (RWS): Drew Neuhart

Assistant Editor: Mike Leuis

Executive Producer: Gina Pagano

Producer: Sabina-Elease Utley

Sound Design: Sam Shaffer

Telecine (Broadcast): The Mill

Colorist: Fergus McCall

Editing Company (Social): Running With Scissors

Editor: Drew Neuhart

Head of Production: Brian Creech

Post Producer: Katherine Leatherwood

Telecine (Social): Running With Scissors

Colorist: Drew Neuhart

Finishing, Visual Effects: RWS

Head of Production: Brian Creech

Flame Artist: Chris Hagen

Flame Assistant: Paul Wiederholt

Post Producer: Katherine Leatherwood

Audio Post Company: Rainmaker Studios

Senior Sound Designer: Jeff McManus

Executive Producer, Owner: Kristin O'Connor

General Manager, Scheduler: Clinton Spell II

Stock Music (Social): Lulatone

@luckthelady Angela Natividad is a frequent contributor to Adweek's creativity blog, AdFreak. She is also the author of Generation Creation and co-founder of Hurrah, an esports agency. She lives in Paris and when she isn't writing, she can be found picking food off your plate.