How about them Oscars? Does anyone really remember anything except the finale and Gary from Chicago? Well, if you’re an ad nerd (and if you’re reading this–surprise–you are), odds are you remember at least two more things: Casey Neistat’s Samsung homage to the creative hoi polloi, and Rolex pulling an Apple while honoring the late Bill Paxton. Both spots were bang-on in quality and sense of occasion. What more can you ask for? Onward!
What: Rolex went to the Oscars with an ad collage of all the brand’s cinematic cameos through the years.
Who: Rolex, JWT New York
Why We Care: Okay, so in the first few seconds I did think this was going to be an Apple watch ad, just because it so closely evoked that epic iPhone spot from a decade ago. But the real culprit was revealed soon enough, and it was still worth the second and third airing it got during that marathon awards show.
What: Samsung’s Oscar ad starring Casey Neistat making a case for content-making masses
Who: Samsung, Wieden+Kennedy
Why We Care: Look after the brand-image dumpster fire that is the Galaxy Note 7–in which every airport in the world aired what amounts to a Samsung anti-ad before every flight–Samsung needs some good news. And here they get it, at least on the marketing front, with a smart strategy aligning itself with grassroots creative community with this impressively understated performance by YouTube star Neistat.
What: Snickers’ latest spot shows just how bad you can screw things up when you’re hungry.
Who: Snickers, BBDO New York
Why We Care: Two words: David Shane. I’m not saying the brand and agency don’t deserve full credit, but any close observer of advertising comedy over the last decade or so knows that Shane can bring the funny like few others can, adding pitch perfect timing and inspired casting to any script. An old gag made great. All hail the master.
What: British road safety PSA against texting while driving
Who: AA Charitable Trust, Think!, adam&eveDDB
Why We Care: Call it snobbery, but I’m partial to New Zealand PSAs about road safety, but here we get one that flips our expectations to illustrate a pretty shocking statistic.
What: A new video from brand behemoth P&G to mark International Women’s Day, which is March 8 this year.
Who: P&G, Badger & Winters
Why We Care: Look, equality is sooo in right now–marches, Audi ads, y’know. But as much as you may want to roll your eyes at this as, say, maybe a blatant marketing ploy to forge an emotional bond between our beliefs and . . . dish soap . . . the company has actually been talking about gender bias for a while, and trying to back up the talk–chief brand officer Marc Pritchard told AdAge that P&G now has 45% of managers and a third of its board who are women. The partnership with Badger & Winters is no coincidence, the project is inspired by the agency’s #WomenNotObjects campaign.