A Star Wars Childhood, Greenpeace Real Estate: Top 5 Ads Of The Week

The Spanish National Lottery gets sweetly weird, Boots UK celebrates the holidays with sisterly love, and Budweiser honors Dale Earnhardt Jr. with one last ride.

A Star Wars Childhood, Greenpeace Real Estate: Top 5 Ads Of The Week

Two years ago, Sony Playstation used the Force of nostalgia to pitch gamers on the first edition of Star Wars Battlefront, and it was the perfect way to bridge the old and the new, tying the childhood imagination of some 30-something to the new role-playing in a galaxy far, far away. Now for Battlefront II, the brand taps youthful imagination once again, but instead of through the lens of nostalgia, it roots its excitement in kids of today. It’s a funny, sweet way to pitch a video game that will probably sell parents on the game as much as their kids. Onward!


Sony Playstation “Star Wars Battlefront II: Rivalry”

What: Growing up with the light and dark sides of the Force.

Who: Sony Playstation, BBH New York

Why we care: A look at every Star Wars fan’s dream next door neighbor.  Once again, the brand knows its bread and butter are diehards who take their fandom to new levels, and here they use that to tell a sweet, yet familiar story of Boy and Girl Next Door, with an intergalactic twist.

Greenpeace France “Orizon”

What: A climate change warning wrapped in satire.

Who: Greenpeace France, Artefact

Why we care: It almost seems real. With the threat of rising oceans as a result of climate change, why wouldn’t some plucky entrepreneur use it as a business opportunity? Sure it’s dark as all hell, but opportunity calls. OK, not really, but the consequences of climate change are real enough to make this seem like barely satire. And that’s why it’s so effective.


The Spanish National Lottery “#DANIELLE”

What: The new Christmas ad from the Spanish State Lottery.

Who: The Spanish State Lottery, Leo Burnett Iberia

Why we care: It’s like Splash-meets-Weird Science-meets-Christmas. Or the saga of Mike and Eleven, if Stranger Things were set in Spain and there were no Upside Down. It’s odd. And perhaps oddest of all, there is no real resolution. No questions are answered. Despite this, it’s actually pretty charming. And at first I found it a bit annoying, but I still can’t help admitting that the sweetness of the story still got me, despite my inner cynic wondering WTF just happened at the end.

Boots UK “#ShowThemYouKnowThem”

What: British retailer’s entry into the U.K.’s Christmas advertising sweepstakes.

Who: Boots UK, Ogilvy London

Why we care: While many ads focus on romantic love, here Boots pulls a Frozen and instead shines a light on the eccentricities and depth of sisterhood. It’s simple, and yet emotional, thanks in some part to the musical stylings of  “Only You” by Yaz (or Yazoo outside of Europe).


Budweiser “One Last Ride”

What: A branded retirement tribute to legendary NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Who: Budweiser, VaynerMedia
Why we care: Athlete tributes are nothing new, but it’s always interesting to see how brands pay tribute to their sponsorship cash cows when the ride is over. Last year, it was Nike and 2K Sports saluting the career of Kobe Bryant. Here, Bud gets emotional with some archival footage and “The Night We Met” by Lord Huron and manages to convey the magnitude of the moment, even to someone who sees NASCAR as just driving fast in circles.

About the author

Jeff Beer is a staff editor at Fast Company, covering advertising, marketing, and brand creativity. He lives in Toronto.