We’ve all seen before and after ads. It’s a common technique in advertising.
Before: Zit faced teenager
After: A perfect peaches and cream complexion!
Before: Overweight housewife
After: MILF in a bikini!
Before: Normal looking guy
After: Zombie Boy!!
Meet Rico Genest, also known as Rico the Zombie or Zombie Boy. Eighty percent of Rico’s body is covered with tattoos of a skeleton and decomposing corpse as part of a full-body tattoo project.
Meet Dermablend. If you’re not familiar with Dermablend, it’s a line of professional makeup known for its ability to cover just about anything, and still be wearable.
Bring the two together and you have one crazy-amazing before and after ad.
And yes, there is a behind the scenes video as well.
I love the fact that the video is done backwards. We see Rico as a normal looking guy first — which is the whole point of Dermablend. You’re not supposed to know it’s there. This wouldn’t have nearly the impact if we saw the process then saw the reveal. It’s one more thing to consider when you’re working on any creative involving a timeline. Where’s your greatest point of impact, and what’s happening at that point?
The following spots defy explanation, which is probably why I’m inexplicably drawn to them. Judge for yourself.
Bug spray ads shall now cease for they have been done to perfection.
No idea what kind of critter this is, but I’m fairly certain you shouldn’t feed him after midnight.
Things you never considered, but should, when selecting ceiling board.
And because Christmas ads seem to start earlier and earlier every year, the strangest holiday ad you’ll ever see.
Ah, food advertising, it’s the fine art of creating a feast for the eyes that hopefully results in customers opening their wallets. I’ve actually done a lot of food advertising in my career. If there is one golden rule, it’s to make the product look appetizing. But rules are made to be broken. So let’s look at some food and food related ads that break the rules.
It’s bread. It’s abs. It’s bread. It’s abs. I’m not sure that I’ve ever looked at a six-pack on a guy and thought “crusty, hot out of the oven loaf.”
When I think of France, I think of really great food, incredible wine, and creepy, stringy, spider-webby cheese. I’m not sure you could make a burger look less appetizing.
Dills Digestive Mints (Belgium)
Should you ever be invited for steak at my house, you have four options as to how you would like your steak cooked:
You’re insulting the cow. Get out of my house.
But I’ve never served racing car tartare. Hmm, there’s a first time for everything!
Wait, late entry from Burger King and it’s more food abs. You know what this means, right? Second time, it’s a trend.
If you know me, you know exactly what I’m talking about. If you don’t know me, you probably think I’m nuts.
What exactly is the Severed Chicken Head Concept? It’s where the spokescritter or character is the product intended for consumption.
Years ago, Saturday Night Live did a spoof ad for the Cluckin’ Chicken. (You can watch it on Hulu here.) The ad features a disembodied animated chicken head talking about how he goes from live chicken to your plate.
A funny thing happened after I saw the spoof ad, I started seeing Severed Chicken Heads everywhere.
Obviously the big question is can you successfully make the Severed Chicken Head Concept work? Absolutely! You’ve heard of M&Ms? It works for one simple reason, they acknowledge that having an edible spokescandy is weird. After that, anything goes.
And now the most disturbing M&Ms ad ever made.
So keep your eyes open for Severed Chicken Heads. (Have you seen the new Hot Pockets Side Shots commercial?) Trust me, you won’t be able to ignore them after reading this post.
Design theory? Nada. Principles of good advertising? Narp. Creative strategy? Negative. This weeks blog post is a mishmash of random bits from around the web. Please don’t think this is a cop out blog post on my part. I’ve had a list of random ads and links for a few weeks now, just sitting on the desktop waiting to be set free. Today is the day. Here we go!
It’s all fun and games until the real doll gets her heart broken. (SFW)
Apparently this is an ad for the Czech Republic’s leading dating site. I wonder how many real dolls are shipped to the Czech Republic on an annual basis? On second thought, no — I don’t want to know.
Want fries with that shotgun?
I honestly thought this was a fake ad. It’s not, and that scares me more than the gun-toting rednecks featured in the ad.
Finally! A way to liven up curling.
If you’re not familiar with Hell Squirrel, check out the previous post. This has to be one of my all time favorite, jacked-up, what was the creative team on, completely random ads. It’s a squirrel suffering from acute alchohol phychosis in a PSA about drunk driving. That alone is nine kinds of awesome, but wait —
Superheroes are very big in our house. Oddly enough, superhero ads kept popping up this week like Clark Kent when Superman is nowhere in sight. Double bonus, they were illustrated — some pretty badly — which means the dear husband was peppered with emails that began “OMG! Have you seen this?!!”
Each one of these is an actual ad. I have no idea if the ads are officially licensed.
Power House Health Clubs, India
Wow, Batman has really let himself go.
It’s really sad when someone immigrates here, adopts the standard American diet (S.A.D.) and develops a weight problem.
Aunt May’s cooking finally caught up with Spider-man.
Sammy 400 Osteoarthritis Therapy, India
I know what you’re going to ask. Is there a second ad in this series? Yes, it features Osama bin Laden and George W. Bush. And yes, it’s equally creepy.
Samsung Quick Cool Air Conditioners, India (I’m seeing a trend here.)
Hulk look confused.
What have we learned here? Is it that illustrated superhero ads are huge in India? Is it that we’re all so familiar with superheroes that even a bad illustration can’t muddle the message of red trunks over blue tights? I’m honestly not sure. So in the immortal words of Jeff Albertson “Worst. Episode. Ever.”
At one time advertising was mostly limited to television, magazines, newspapers, billboards and radio — and the Duer real estate balloon if you lived in Oklahoma City. Beyond that, there was a lot of ad free space in the world.
Oh how times have changed!
Now it seems like every space is potential ad space. Mr. Yogato in Dupont will give you 10% off if you let them advertise on your forehead via rubber stamp. And yes, there’s even a company offering ad space on the moon.
I’m secretly waiting for the day when a client gazes at their ad emblazoned on the lunar surface and asks “Can we make the logo bigger?” No, we can’t. Why? Because it’s on the #*$%*#@ moon! (You’ll have to imagine me doing my best Lewis Black impersonation.)
So what’s the latest ad free space turned prime real estate for advertising?
Try public restroom mirrors. Yep, Chicago O’Hare Airport is rolling out mirror ads in public restrooms over the next two months.
Some potential products I think would be perfect for mirrorvertising —
Acne products, also obvious.
Have you seen the bags under your eyes?
Anything with the Old Spice guy
Look at me. Look at you. Now back to me.
No doubt this isn’t the final frontier of advertising. As to what’s next, your guess is as good as mine.
Confession, I’ve never seen any of the Saw movies. I’m a big chicken. In my head, the line between reality and make-believe is a very thin, almost invisible, pencil line. The one and only episode of The Walking Dead I watched was viewed through my fingers with my eyes half-closed. (OMG!! Zombies ate the horse!! They. Ate. The. Horse.)
As it turns out, my priorities are askew. I shouldn’t fear zombies. What I should really be afraid of is GERMS.
If you live in the petri dish we call modern society, there’s only one thing that can save you from the germ scourge — hand sanitizer.
Industrial strength foam in little squirty containers within reach at all times, that’s how we’re gonna save the world. But how do you to convey the true horror of this present situation to the public at large? That’s easy. Use dismembered body parts. (Duh!)
I came across these print ads for Sanzer brand hand sanitizer produced by an agency in Thailand. The strategy behind the ads is solid. Use Sanzer hand sanitizer because you never know what you’re really touching. I get it. The black plague is alive and well somewhere on a Metro handrail. Protect yourself now before it’s too late.
Unfortunately, the ads are more Saw than Lysol.
I don’t care that Sanzer kills germs. Someone left two hands and multiple fingers in the bathroom, the bus and a phone booth. I know how this movie ends. I’m supposed to appreciate life more after hacking off my own right arm with a spork. Well, you can forget it. I’m not touching anything. I’m getting the hell out of there.
Oh and a final word on the coming germ apocalypse from the late, great George Carlin. (The name George Carlin alone should let you know there’s foul language in the following video.)
What’s really scary, George may be right.
Drinking and driving is a bad idea. It’s the one thing all of humanity can agree on. No matter what country you’re in there’s probably a law against throwing back several beers, sakes, vodkas or other libations and operating a motor vehicle.
• Australia, Canada, England and France are all similar to the U.S. — fines, suspended license, jail.
• Finland and Sweden automatically sentence drunk drivers to one year in jail with hard labor.
• South Africa drinking and driving gets you either 10 years in prison, a $10,000 fine or both.
• Get busted for drinking and driving in Turkey, they take you 20 miles outside of town and make you walk back with police escort.
• In Poland, you’re subject to jail, fines and — this is brilliant — mandatory attendance at political lectures.
• First time offender in El Salvador? Congrats, you’ve earned yourself death by firing squad.*
In this global effort to discourage drinking and driving, most countries have produced a PSA or two on the subject. I came across this gem from the Russian Health Ministry on Copyranter.
My Russian isn’t rusty. It’s nonexistent. According to Copyranter, “Hell Squirrel” had one too many and killed either his wife or a friend’s wife. Now suffering from acute alcohol psychosis, he’s rambling on about invisible spiders and singing Volga.
I think the creative team may have had one too many before coming up with this concept. However, being as the holidays are upon us, let us all remember the lesson of “Hell Squirrel.” Don’t drink and drive. You could wind up in a rubber room with a bad case of mange.
*According to the Amnesty International website, El Salvador banned execution by firing squad except in times of international war — the laws may have changed. Have a brewski and drive at your own risk. Should you find yourself in front of a firing squad, don’t say I didn’t warn you.