Archive for category Top of the list

What Sexes Want According To Social Media

Social media monitoring company NetBase analyzed a year’s worth of online conversations — 27 billion, to be exact. Using natural language processing, they parsed English grammar and gender voice in search of phrases like “I want X.” The data was then analyzed for sentiment, and condensed into a top 10 list for each sex. The fascinating results have been compiled in the punchy infographic below.

You’ll have to scroll down to see the winners. But it’s worth noting that food absolutely dominates social media conversation among both genders.

source : Mashable

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Google’s Gags Worldwide For April Fool’s Day 2012

It was just last year that SearchEngineLand.com gave Google the winner’s trophy for the best April Fool’s Gags.This year they made another round of April Fool’s Day jokes span across the globe of Google’s international properties. Below is a recap of Google’s pranks from SearchEngineLand.com :

Google Maps In 8-Bit For NES

Google’s pranks began early yesterday morning with a blog post announcing that Google Japan has created an 8-bit version of Google Maps for the original Nintendo Entertainment System. You can relive all your favorite 1980s graphics by clicking the “Quest” button in the upper right corner on maps.google.com(you can still do it today!).

Google’s Really Advanced Search
Speaking of search, this one will probably go over well with our audience. Google’s really advanced search page has some pretty funny options, like this:

You can also narrow your results based on what font the page uses, what textured background the page has and which “embarrassing grammatical faux pas” is found on the page. If you’re into SEO, you’ll like this one. You may even find yourself wishing that the page actually worked.

Google Chrome Multitask Mode
The Google Chrome team thinks one mouse/hand isn’t enough for web browsing, so they’ve launched Multitask Mode — two mice/hands at once.

The YouTube Collection
YouTube’s annual April Fool’s Day prank is the YouTube Collection — all of YouTube on DVD. Once you order, 175 trucks will deliver the DVDs right to your door. Oh, just watch the video. Make your checks payable to “Matt McGee” if you’re planning to order.

That’s Not All
There are other search-related April Fool’s Day gags, perhaps my favorite of which is Google Nigeria, which jokingly asks you to input your bank account number so you can “search for inheritance.”

Don’t be alarmed: the search box just runs a normal Google search (not that you’d actually put your bank account number in there, anyway, right?) and, while this is NOT an official Google gag, it also doesn’t appear to be run by some Nigerian prince. (It’s a production from 85by55.com.)

More at : http://searchengineland.com/googles-gags-go-worldwide-for-april-fools-day-2012-117046

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Top 20 Cities For New Ideas

Hub Culture is one of the most interesting under-the-radar communities out there. Established by Stan Stalnaker, it’s part social network, part co-working space, part digital currency eco-system. By researching the opinions of the HubCulture community, Stan has updated his list of the most influential hubs of new ideas and inspiration. Here’s the top 20 list:

1. São Paulo (2011 rank: 1)
Perched at the top of the list for a record third year is São Paulo, where the defining topic of conversation continues to be how hard it is to find good help. You know things are going well when staffing your dinner party adequately is a major topic of concern. It is however a harbinger – inflation and class ambition do not make a tranquil mix forever. The strong currency and commodity growth at large aren’t the only thing fueling Brazil – property and consumer retail are continuing to enjoy enviable growth rates despite a 4Q dip last year. Meanwhile, the city is ever more popular, and ever more desirable for corporate postings, regional businesses, and those looking to experience the Brazilian boom first-hand.
Enjoy it while it lasts, Brazilianos.

2. Hong Kong (2011 rank: 7)
Hong Kong hits a high note this year – a cosmopolitan mix, fantastic shopping and epicenter attitude for business make it the world’s drop-in city. But the downsides – pollution, overcrowding, and little thought for public space – have often held it back.
Despite these issues, lately the world just seems to bend more toward Hong Kong – maybe because there is an ever stronger air of confidence and derring-do in the city? HK simply doesn’t care what everyone else thinks anymore, and that makes us all care even more (especially big brother to the north). As the world navigates the shift of power from west to east, Hong Kong remains perfectly balanced between the two.
Plus, try going out on a weekend – holy schmodel! HK is ground-zero to the world’s young, rich and beautiful, tomorrow’s bright lights rocking today’s late nights.

Zhang Xin’s SOHO is Beijing’s new heart.

3. Beijing (2011 rank: 14)
While its still a bit rough around the edges, one gets the impression that Beijing is the new Manhattan, but on a much larger scale. Yes, its still under construction. Yes, you can still ride a rickety rickshaw from a man with no teeth through teeming traffic, but now he’ll charge you $40 bucks. Yes, its freezing cold half the year and choking with dust the other half. But it will rule, and therefore, people are building and innovating and spending and earning and just plain living. It’s very alive right now, Beijing, in a way other places aren’t.

4. Berlin (2011 rank: 4)
Berlin is like your hipster friend who went into local politics and ended up raising your property taxes. All the cool kids are still there, but the city’s evolution into political power player is complete, and that’s replacing the hip factor with raw power. Berlin is calling the shots across Europe – from the Greek crisis to EU interest rates, and so for every underground dungeon slash disco there are now two lawyers in a coffee shop talking about work. That’s life.

5. London (2011 rank: 9)
It’s official, this is London’s year – from the Queen’s Jubilee to the Olympics, there is no better place in the world to be this summer. Lots of labour is coming to fruition in London – from the epic Shard, Europe’s tallest building, to progress on Crossrail, the city is making sure it will remain the center of European business for a long time to come. As the pound deflated in the crisis, cost of living has become thankfully more reasonable, and there’s still an influx of foreign money propping up property. Trouble is… no one knows what abyss lies after the Olympics, and how Team Britain can compete in a world that offers a lot more for less – and with better weather. Banks are downsizing. Taxes are epic. The streets are filled with unemployed alcoholics. But otherwise it’s great!

6. New York (2011 rank: 6)
As the US economy evens out, New York stands to benefit from all the forces that make urbanization a driving force elsewhere on the planet. America’s most optimistic city offers a comparatively green lifestyle and a steady creative sector, leadership in finance, and a re-emerging ‘scene’. Somehow the city managed to capture and amplify the Occupy movement into something resembling hacktivism, with a simple message: “if we don’t like something, we change it”. Not much has actually changed, but at least post-Occupy, can-do New York refuses to be anyone’s victim.

7. Sydney (2011 rank: 3)
Sydney remains the place everyone would go if it weren’t so far away. Over the last twelve months, the continent has only moved about 6 mm closer to the rest of civilization. Another year of strong commodities and a hot economy mean another year richer. The biggest challenge is that Sydney is pricing itself out of the global market on the back of a strong currency and intense demand in the urban core, but is that so bad if you’re already established there? Nope.

8. Singapore (2011 rank: 11)
Singapore is sizzling. We’ve talked about the city’s green credentials, oasis feeling, sticky-bun mall flavouring, and increasingly beautiful architecture before, but its nice to see the edge here getting sharper and sharper. Where else can you feel like an alien strolling into a roof top bar covered in neon and gold fixtures, as the city glimmers at your feet? One casino here turns over as much cash as Vegas in a year. And you’ll need to gamble just to afford the drinks – life here has gotten pretty expensive lately. Also: bubble tea.

9. Istanbul (2011 rank: 18)
Istanbul is electric. All that youthful energy is just busting with creative endeavours, and its such a cool place to be, especially if you’re in the leisure sector. The sense that Istanbul is building a great future for itself has been pervasive for awhile now – its more of the same, with more results, more people and more attitude featuring that unique stamp of a crossroad. The creative vibe has really taken root here, and its turning a leisure attitude unrivalled anywhere and completely impossible to copy into big business. Its evident in the art galleries popping up all over town, the furniture brands, and the growing list of mobile tech startups squashed into every corner of the city.

10. Rio de Janeiro (2011 rank: 20)
2012 kicks off a 4 year marathon for Rio, beginning with this summer’s Rio +20 Summit on the environment, and running to the World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics. Is Rio ready? Crime is still an issue, 1 in 3 live in a slum, and all the activity has driven real-estate prices sky high. There aren’t enough hotels, or cops, or thong shops.
But relax, this is Rio! Have a frozen acai smoothie, don your Havainas and ride the wave – Rio is in for a fantastic ride. For quality of life alone, it might be number 1 on the planet, provided you don’t have to ruin your beach runs with a day job.

11. Capetown (2011 rank: 17)
If Africa was a car, South Africa would be the engine and Capetown the tantalising hood ornament. From the cheesy panoramas infesting Facebook to the bragging tourists sipping a Stellenbosch wine on Clifton 4 in their status updates, this city is where everyone wants to be. Overlooked is how great the time zone is – right on par with London, one wonders if you couldn’t actually serve the world from an iPad on the beach in a pair of Aca Joes. Crime is down, Africa is booming, and the living is good, why not?

12. Tokyo (2011 rank: 12)
Sometimes it take a disaster to jolt us into new ways of thinking, and its nice to see how Tokyo has changed since this time last year. A stoic response to the devastating earthquake and tsunami lit a fire for something new in Japan – a kind of hacker mentality that was never obvious has been revealed – with a sense that citizens are taking their future into their own hands. In the days after the disaster a flurry of activity unleashed social collective responses, and the results were fascinating.Tokyo was at the center of this shift and is different because of it. Now its less status quo, more DIY.

13. Seattle (new)
Forget the coffee-house cliches – the Nicki Minaj of cities is back in fashion. That’s all there is to it. Signature look neo-grunge and flannels stretch from Doha to Detroit, and Seattle’s neon Twin Peaks quirkiness is visible in so many forms. Pop music has taken the hint, infusing everything from the Foo Fighters to Beats by Dr. Dre with the Seattle Kitsch.
This time Amazon, not Microsoft, is the poster-child – as they move to own the entire book publishing supply chain, take on Apple and the Goog, and deepen their reach into business services all at the same time. Seattle may not be the biggest city on this list, but it is punching well above its weight in this cultural register.

14. Mexico D.F. (2011 rank: 16)
Still the world’s biggest city, Mexico is onto a leisure story much in the way that Istanbul is creating its own reality. Big, brash, noisy, the city’s elders are trying to kickstart a green revolution without much luck. But change is slow, and in the meantime the habit of escaping hell for the weekend, much the way New Yorkers exit for the Hamptons and Miami, has become de rigeur. The city may not offer everything, but the jetset is finding it further afield, and that’s attracting global talent, who increasingly agree Mexico’s capital is a great place to be based – on the weekdays.

15. Shanghai (2011 rank: 8)
Why did Shanghai slip so much this year? Zeitgeist is all about radar, and while we know Shanghai should be on this list, there’s not much new happening this year that explains why. Sure, its a mecca. Sure, there’s new stuff every day. Of course its getting bigger and better and more exciting. But growing rumbles of a property slowdown, bad debt and other go-go problems (that extend across the land) are tempering the mood in Shanghai. Compared to Beijing, Shanghai just feels a bit “meh” at the moment.

16. San Francisco (2011 rank: 10)
San Francisco isn’t the first city that comes to mind when you think of corruption, but this is the year where the city gets skewered by the new rich. Facebook’s IPO is creating an army of millionaires who are expected to cash in and change the dynamic of the city in overnight – from luxury real estate to funding the next big thing, the mood is bright, but the envy is deep. It remains to be seen how windfalls will affect the city at large, or if it will just widen the booming class divide.

17. Dubai (Returning, 2009 rank: 15)

Its been hard-time-city in Dubai since the crash – with all those stories of abandoned BMWs at the airports, migrant workers keeling over with kidney failure and the like. But you can’t build a city like Dubai and expect it to not come back fighting. As the economy absorbs its own growth and residents settle into whatever latest and greatest thing was just built, the reality is that brands are still coming, tourists are still coming, families are growing and the miracle of the Gulf is more than a mirage. Dubai is back, chastened, and with a smirk. As one local puts it, “Dubai has withstood the test of time”. In this case, that’s 24 months, but ok! It does sum up the optimism.

18. Los Angeles: (2011 rank: 4)
Its not those homeless tent cities in the park, the endless traffic, the train wreck that is Beverly HIlls reality TV or the yawning Oscars – but something is a bit stale in the city of Angels. The decay hit the nostrils around the whole SOPA brouhaha, which revealed to the entire world how desperately worried Hollywood is about its business model – and the lengths it will go to trying to protect what remains. Somehow this… fear… can pervade everything, despite the relatively small role of entertainment on actual output. So yes MPAA, a dog on the defensive bites, but who likes a biting dog? LA’s overplayed hand against the valley will be costing it dearly for time to come. Bright spot? The Grammys are “in” and flourishing in LA.

19. Moscow (2011 rank: 15)
Speaking of class divides, Moscow gets credit for its own approach to activism. The city’s gritty determination to plunge forward, regardless of sleet, snow, or political baton stick deserves some credit. Russia is never easy to understand, but if the universal language is money, then Moscow remains a growing force. Especially abroad. The Ruskies have invaded Thailand and Sri Lanka, turning their sights from the Mediterranean to new paradises for bi-continental living. Moscovite money is transforming these locations into elite havens, far from the realities of life at home, and that’s shaping futures from tundra to tropics.

20. Abu Dhabi (2011 rank: 19)
Steady as as she goes, Abu Dhabi bumps along the bottom of this year’s list with more money in the bank than ever. It has emerged as the third of a private banking triumvarate (with Zurich and Singapore) and a similar reputation for sensible reliability. Cultural investment dividends like the Guggenheim, art fair, and museums are maturing, and the city is actually pretty fun! Maybe it will move up once it loosens up.

via PSFK, Hub Culture

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Top 10 Viral-Making Creative Agencies

Here is the chart of top ten creative agencies based on most watched viral work in 2011.  Wieden + Kennedy Portland stays on top with their all new Old Spice campaign.

Which one is your favorite?

Brand Top Campaigns of 2011 2011 Views  Spot
1 Wieden + Kennedy Portland New Old Spice Guy Fabio 191,361,089 New Old Spice Guy Fabio: 191,361,089
2 Deutsch Los Angeles The Force 90,238,873 The Force: 90,238,873
3 Goodby Silverstein & Partners Doritos, Pug Attack 85,036,550 Doritos, Pug Attack: 85,036,550
4 TBWA\Media Arts Lab Introducing iPhone 4S 62,952,509 Introducing iPhone 4S: 62,952,509
5 BETC Euro RSCG Live Young 58,245,849 Live Young: 58,245,849
6 Saatchi & Saatchi London Royal Wedding 47,944,113 Royal Wedding: 47,944,113
7 Crispin Porter + Bogusky Ozzy vs. Bieber 37,268,173 Ozzy vs. Bieber: 37,268,173
8 BBH London The Web Is What You Make Of It 35,316,555 The Web Is What You Make Of It: 35,316,555
9 Wieden + Kennedy Amsterdam The Entrance 29,465,114 The Entrance: 29,465,114
10 BBDO New York You’re Not You When You’re Hungry 27,425,530 You're Not You When You're Hungry: 27,425,530

Source :  Visible Measures

Read article : http://adage.com/article/the-viral-video-chart/viral-video-charts-top-creative-agencies-2011/231812/

 

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30 Crazy Japanese Ads Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger

When he wasn’t fathering children out of wedlock with household staff, Arnold Schwarzenegger was often traveling to Japan to shoot TV commercials—a favorite pastime of many Western celebs who want to cash in without looking greedy back home. Arnold, though, did more Japanese ads than most—and they were wackier than most, too. Check out the video below, which compiles 30 Arnold gems and claims to be his “complete Japanese commercial filmography.” The best part, for Arnold, is that they’ll still offer him work now if he wants it.

Source: Tim Nudd from Adweek

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30 Freakiest Ads of 2010

It’s that time of year again—when we grit our teeth and pick the weirdest, goofiest, grossest, silliest and freakiest ads of the year. The 2010 crop had it all: death, sex, zombies, farting, car accidents, domestic abuse, cancer, clowns, guys rubbing their own testicles on their face. You really couldn’t ask for much more. Check out the winners (in some cases, losers) below. We still have a month to go in 2010, so we promise to update this list with anything particularly insane from December. For now, enjoy.

30. Fortnight lingerie


“Super Sexy CPR”
Red Urban, Toronto
We begin, logically enough, with lesbian CPR. This Canadian video from Fortnight lingerie is one of the racier first-aid demonstrations you’ll ever see—and pretty salacious as lingerie ads go, too. Two Fortnight-clad ladies show proper CPR technique, including the firm but tender chest compressions and all-important mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Thankfully, the victim recovers from her life-threatening condition—had she perished, we’d be in a whole different kind of fetish video. The marketer did a followup, “Super Sexy Abdominal Thrusts,” making its mark as the official lingerie of suggestive instructional videos.

29. A&E


“Hasselhoff Baby”
Digital Kitchen, New York
A&E created a reality series about David Hasselhoff and his two daughters, who are “aspiring singers.” (Update: It was canceled after two episodes.) To promote it, the network rolled out this clip from Digital Kitchen showing a pint-size Hoff trucking down the beach, the ocean breeze gently caressing his toddler chest hair, as hot women look on. “Some people are born awesome,” says the tagline. Those same people later drunkenly eat burgers off the floor, but that’s OK. The Hoff is badly in need of mothering at every age, so this promo is right on. Watch out, Huggies jeans-diaper boy. There’s a new kid in town.

28. Starburst


“Zombie”
TBWA\Chiat\Day, New York
Starburst is advertising itself lately as a contradiction—a solid candy that’s also juicy, like a liquid. The idea was introduced in 2009 with a Scottish Korean father and son, who, like Starburst, “don’t make a wee bit o’ sense.” The Scottish Koreans returned in 2010 in this ad from TBWA\Chiat\Day, in which they fend off a bus-riding zombie who thinks “living dead” is the most noteworthy contradiction of all. The earlier spot provoked some odd reactions around the Web (e.g., “I think Korea and Scotland have a lot in common. Both have been invaded repeatedly by their neighbors, both have a reputation for loving the drink a bit, and both have slightly feminine native attire”). Starburst was probably counting on the living dead not to complain this time. The zombie might look familiar—he’s played by Zach Woods, aka Gabe from NBC’s The Office.

27. Utah State Fair


“Uncommonly Good Pigs”
Director: Jared Hess, Salt Lake City
Has any human ever serenaded a pig so passionately? Doubtful. Napoleon Dynamite director Jared Hess went all out with a pair of spots for the Utah State Fair, getting actor Markus T. Boddie to voice his deepest feelings for a pig and a funnel cake (both well-loved Utah State Fair staples). The client wasn’t feeling the love, though, and rejected the ads out of hand, saying they had “sexual undertones” and were “over the top.” Hess believed it was because the actor, Boddie, is black. Boddie sided with Hess. “There are black people here in Utah that aren’t related to Gladys Knight,” he said. “If we embrace that, then I think that’s the image of Utah we want to take forward.” The sow had no comment.

26. Jack in the Box


“2 for $3 Croissants”
Secret Weapon, Santa Monica, Calif.
Fast-food commercials are the last place you want to hear about a four-hour erection, but Jack in the Box went there anyway in this spot from longtime agency Secret Weapon Marketing. Two breakfast croissants for $3 is actually a pretty good deal; it’s just a shame that customers have to associate it with Jack’s father’s never-ending boner. On the upside, at least we know Jack’s chronic creepiness was a genetic inheritance, not the result of working at this particular fast-food chain all his life.

25. Fresh Up Soda


“Thirst Is Creepy”
Colenso BBDO, Auckland, New Zealand
Be extra careful if you get a massage in New Zealand. Chances are the masseur will be excessively dehydrated, due to lack of Fresh Up soda, causing him to take on a severely fanged appearance, and speak in a horribly stilted manner—none of which will be very relaxing for you, the customer. “Thirst is creepy,” says the tagline. A classic WTF commercial from the New Zealanders.

24. Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine


“Consequences”
Washington, D.C.
And the award for best performance by an overfed corpse in a commercial in 2010 goes to … the guy still clutching a greasy McDonald’s burger in this pro-vegetarian spot from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine! McDonald’s wasn’t overly fond of the “I was lovin’ it” slogan and Golden Arches at the end. “This commercial is outrageous, misleading and unfair to all consumers,” a rep for the chain said. “McDonald’s trusts our customers to put such outlandish propaganda in perspective, and to make food and lifestyle choices that are right for them.” And of course, they always do. McDonald’s sales have been rising all through 2010.

23. Luftal


“Jacuzzi”
Draftfcb, Mexico City
Luftal, a Bristol-Myers Squibb gas medication sold over the counter in Mexico, offers this unique selling proposition: It will fix your gas problem and therefore calm the gross, jacuzzi-like, fart-churned seas of your bathtub. If you’re lucky, your wife/girlfriend will even fetch the Luftal pill and a glass of water for you when the bubble trouble arises—with nary a hint of the utter repugnance she must feel for you inside. Plus, think of all the money you’ll save on air freshener.

22. Better Marriage Blanket


“Silent … but Deadly”
Media Corp., Overland Park, Kan.
Sticking with the farting theme for the moment—behold the Better Marriage Blanket, a military-grade fart-absorbing blanket that sounds like, and should be, a B-grade Saturday Night Live ad parody. But no, it’s real. (What would this list be without a ludicrous infomercial?) Leaving aside the question of whether the market demands such a product, are they sure it makes “a great gift” for a wedding or anniversary? Yeah, that will go over well. Your days of sleeping on the couch because of your spouse’s digestive trouble might be over, but your days of sleeping on the couch because you’re an insensitive asshole will just be beginning.

21. Fruit Gushers


“Gusher for an Eye”
Saatchi & Saatchi, New York
This 90-second piece of oddvertising—Gerry Graf’s swan song at Saatchi & Saatchi—told the tale of Todd, a kid with a squirting blue Fruit Gusher for an eye. His gift/problem is evident from birth, as he immediately douses his mom with a powerful hose of sticky blue goo. Growing up, he turns out to be a crowd favorite, giving friends a quick squirt-on-the-go, and even providing Dad with a surreptitious slurp. The problem will be when he grows up and tries to join the working world. He’ll be stunted and shunned, like almost all adult figures in candy commercials. Until then, keep gushing.

20. Target


“GPSmas”
Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, Ore.
We’re including this more for the whole campaign than any individual spot. Has there been a weirder, more loony ad character from a major marketer in recent memory than Maria Bamford’s bat-shit-crazy, shopping-obsessed Christmas Lady from Wieden + Kennedy’s Target ads? Overzealous holiday shoppers are a common trope, but rarely are they as serial-killery as Bamford. (In her stand-up comedy career, she’s known for her jokes about depression and loneliness, which will come as no surprise to anyone familiar with these ads.) The oddest part is that 2010 was a return engagement for the Christmas Lady—which means she presumably moved product in 2009. You have to salute Target for taking the leap with her, not once but twice. Now, please make her go away.

19. St. John’s Ambulance


“Popcorn”
BBH, London
Not a commercial proper—more of an ambush. For this stunt PSA on behalf of St. John’s Ambulance, BBH treated a live audience of moviegoers in London to an idyllic family scene that turns ghastly when one of the daughters begins to choke on popcorn. Not knowing how to handle the situation, the parents panic—and the mother screams for help as the girl goes limp. Suddenly, a woman stands up in the audience, shouts that she can help, and hurries backstage in the movie theater—she then appears on screen and saves the day, emphasizing the importance of knowing first aid. It was a clever trick that mostly redeems the unpleasant shock tactics. The audience applauds at the end, though it’s unclear whether they appreciated the experience or are just being polite as the actress returns to her seat.

18. Skittles


“Plant”
TBWA\Chiat\Day, New York
The first of two Skittles ads from TBWA\Chiat\Day on our list, this one featured a guy with a pesky Skittles tree growing out of his stomach. He’s filthy and tired and just wants to have the thing looked at, and hopefully removed, so he can go to college and have a life. But his nightmare of a mom won’t hear of it. His miraculous Skittles bounty at harvest time is just too valuable. The ad sticks closely to the Skittles formula, with a guy who is both blessed and cursed by the candies, and battling a wrecked anatomy for good measure. Directed by Guy Shelmerdine.

17. Securite Routiere


“The Survivor”
Lowe Strateus, Paris
Our Freakiest Ads of 2009 collection last year included a brutal drunk-driving PSA from New Mexico that was told in reverse, beginning with a dead girl whispering to her guilt-ridden father in prison and proceeding backwards to when the tragedy was still avoidable. This Lowe Strateus spot for Sécurité Routière in France uses the same trick. It opens with a wrenchingly realistic hospital scene (the dude lost a leg!) and tracks back to a few hours earlier, when the driver avoids his fate by choosing to spend the night at a friend’s house. The New Mexico spot was maybe more jarring, as its message was even bleaker—offering no chance of reprieve. But the French ad has the bloody stump. OK, let’s call it even!

16. 10:10


“No Pressure”
Director: Dougal Wilson, U.K.
The 10:10 environmental campaign, aimed at getting individuals to cut their carbon emissions by 10 percent a year starting in 2010, misfired spectacularly with this video from comic screenwriter Richard Curtis and director Dougal Wilson (and featuring a bizarre cameo from Gillian Anderson at the end). The idea was: Anyone who doesn’t want to cut their carbon emissions will get blown up, literally, creating a bloody mess. This was depicted perhaps a tad too realistically, as viewers generally howled their disapproval. That reaction eventually prompted an apology from the 10:10 people, but not before they replied brusquely: “We ‘killed’ five people to make ‘No Pressure’—a mere blip compared to the 300,000 real people who now die each year from climate change.”

15. AIDES


“Graffiti”
TBWA, Paris
Spot is NSFW. TBWA Paris has done some impressive work on behalf of AIDES, the French association dedicated to fighting HIV and AIDS. (We included one of the agency’s animated spots in our recent feature on epic ads.) This clip is no different, featuring whimsically obscene bathroom graffiti fleeing a penis as it tries to have a good time—without a condom. Eventually it cleans up its act, which is more than you can say for those bathroom stalls. Man, they are filthy! Directed by Yoann Lemoine.

14. Canadian Cancer Society


“Breath”
DDB, Toronto
DDB Toronto went the horror-movie route with this anti-smoking spot in which an attractive young woman takes a drag off a fag and instantly transforms into a haggard old goat. “Every cigarette you smoke can take years off your life,” says the copy. The ad gets high marks for creepiness, though one could argue that a good way to keep from getting old and wrinkly is actually to smoke more cigarettes, thus boosting your chances for an early exit, before those awkward elderly years hit. In fact, if smoking made people prematurely wrinkly, as opposed to prematurely dead, there would probably be a lot fewer smokers around.

13. Vixol Red


“Stick Figure”
McCann Erickson, Bangkok, Thailand
We didn’t include many Asian ads on this list (weird Japanese commercials alone could fill 10 times this space), but we had to mention this Thai floor-cleaner spot, as well as the Indonesian mouthwash ad below. In McCann’s Vixol spot, the grime between a floor’s tiles is personified by a bizarre, tiny, stretchy, rubberlike man who won’t budge—despite the best efforts of an exhausted homemaker and two muscly, white-afroed guys representing Brand X. But Vixol, portrayed simply by a woman dressed up as a Vixol bottle, calls to the horrid brown Gumby, and he jumps up and runs off. Exceptionally odd.

12. Frezza mouthwash


“Gas Chamber”
Ogilvy & Mather, Jakarta, Indonesia
Likewise, this Indonesian spot by Ogilvy & Mather for Frezza mouthwash is off-the-charts strange. It is surely the year’s only dental-care commercial to feature a person being put to death in a gas chamber. “Bad breath kills,” says the tagline, as the doomed prisoner is strapped into his chair and subjected to the noxious exhalations of a bunch of dudes with nasty, rotten teeth. These guys need a dentist more than a new brand of mouthwash. Weird idea, but hey, great execution!

11. Vulva Original


“The Intimate Scent of a Beautiful Woman”
Germany
Spot is NSFW. In America, you can’t even say the word vagina on TV. In Germany, things are more lax. You can create a scent called Vulva Original, featuring the actual aroma of its namesake, and advertise it with a commercial showing a dude sniffing the seat of an exercise bike that’s just been ridden by a woman. Yes, the ad is NSFW, but it’s like a PBS Kids special compared to the gallery of print work on the Web site. Doesn’t make a great gift.

10. Walmart


“Clown”
Publicis & Hal Riney, San Francisco
Walmart’s “Clown” spot from Publicis & Hal Riney was such a departure from the retail giant’s usual image that it bordered on weird self-mockery. It connected something everyone should hate (i.e., Walmart) with something they already hate (i.e., clowns). The setup is innocuous enough, but the guy’s scream (after he impales his foot on a plastic unicorn) goes on so long, it becomes uncomfortable—even menacing. The wife reacts nonchalantly, and the chirpy Walmart music tries to lighten the mood. But don’t kid yourself—Daddy’s got issues. The children were smart to hightail it out of there before the sad clown really loses it.

9. Skittles


“Tube Sock”
TBWA\Chiat\Day, New York
This second, and freakier, Skittles spot on our list (along with the “Plant” ad at No. 18) heralded the arrival of Fruit Fizzl’d Skittles, which make your tongue snap, crackle and pop. To promote the candies, TBWA\Chiat\Day introduced an elderly couple who are intent on sparking up their taste buds. The wife simply eats Fruit Fizzl’d Skittles. The husband, making things more complicated than they need to be, prefers to have a giant tube-sock slave pad around the house and zap him in the tongue with the static electricity. As ad characters go, Tube Sock is a truly sad bastard—a faceless, hulking mass of servitude, with one leg inexplicably thicker than the other, doomed to unquestioningly perform his senile master’s bidding. The kids, of course, loved him. The spot was directed by Ulf Johansson, who will show up again below with another spot in the top 10.

8. BFF (Women Against Violence)


“Stairs”
Young & Rubicam, Frankfurt, Germany
One of the most striking PSAs of the year, this spot from Y&R in Germany (and director Titus Twister) tackled the problem of women falling down stairs. Or more to the point, women not falling down stairs. According to Osocio, everyone involved in the production worked for free: the stunt women, the actors, the 2-D and 3-D animators, the musicians and color graders. Also, the music was an original composition created specifically for the spot. Perhaps most remarkably, it was only the second-best domestic-violence spot of the year produced by the Y&R network.

7. Sussex Safer Roads


“Embrace Life”
Director: Daniel Cox, Sussex, England
This one might be a stretch, but we’re including it anyway—the Sussex Safer Roads Partnership’s famous plea for seatbelt use. Many safe-driving PSAs are freaky because of all the blood and guts. This one’s the opposite. It doesn’t feature a single mangled body, piercing scream or gut-wrenching sob. It doesn’t even feature a car—just a man and his wife and daughter make-believe acting out an accident scene in slow motion in their living room. Yet it’s just as emotionally powerful—in fact, more so—than all the gore and mayhem that are the category’s stock in trade. No spot has ever connected seatbelts, love and life quite so exquisitely. In that sense, it was the year’s freakiest road-safety spot. With more than 12 million views on YouTube as of this writing, it also reached a massive global audience—and was recognized at the U.K.’s Campaign Media Awards in November with the inaugural YouTube Ad of the Year award.

6. Drench


“Cubehead”
CHI & Partners, London
Juice brand Drench brought us one of the year’s most puzzling characters: a subway traveler with a Rubik’s Cube-like head. The guy is all discombobulated upstairs, and needs to suck down some Drench to solve the mess, as the song “Oops Upside Your Head” by the Gap Band plays. Copy at the end reads, “Brains perform best when they’re hydrated. Stay drenched.” Two masks were built for the spot—one for the wide shots, with the actor walking down the platform, and a second as a model for the moving cubehead. The actor’s facial expressions were then filmed, and superimposed on the mask. Sounds like a real headache! Directed by Ulf Johansson, who also did Skittles’ “Tube Sock” spot, at No. 10 on our list.

5. Snickers


“Grocery Store Lady”
BBDO, New York
Probably the best-known freaky commercial of the year, Snickers’ first-ever Halloween spot succeeded greatly in creeping out its audience. A giant, warbly-voiced lady in what looks like a Jocelyn Wildenstein mask approaches a shopper at a grocery store and begins loading her cart with Snickers. Not content to make candy suggestions, the creature also caresses the terrified shopper’s face. By the end of the spot, it’s revealed that the freaky lady is just two kids playing dress-up. Or is it—more ominously—a boy and his father? Hey, you never know. Mars rep Lauren Nodzak feigned innocence, saying the ad was simply geared toward moms who “want to impress during Halloween and provide the best costumes, candy and hospitality.”

4. True Clean Towel

“The Daily Routine”
New York
The year’s most off-putting visual—a guy rubbing a disembodied scrotum all over his face—was served up in this unbelievable video for the True Clean Towel. It’s a real product that features the outline of a body printed on it, so you know which part of the towel you should use to dry your face, and which part you should use to dry your groin—and never the twain shall meet. If you fail to keep track, the ad suggests, you will end up rubbing your genitals all over your face. “Know where your towel has been” is the tagline. The towel is available for $19 (or just $15 if you order by Dec. 3). “By working our butts off, we have kept costs down,” the creators explain on the Web site. Technically, though, they worked their balls off. The Old Spice guy, arbiter of all things male and bathroom, would not approve.

3. Diesel sneakers


“Countryside”
Santo, Buenos Aires, Argentina
A shoe-car hunts down an ass-car in a remote desert, corners it and kicks its ass in this insane video for Diesel sneakers. Then, surprisingly, a love affair ensues. The pair ride off together into the sunset, locked in an obscene embrace, as copy reads: “I feel I wasn’t made for running, but to kick you tender till the end of time.” There was plenty of assvertising in 2010, and this global Diesel campaign supplied about half of it. Dozens of videos and print ads offered the same basic message: that asses are made for kicking, preferably by Diesel-made footwear.

2. Sony PlayStation


“Victor”
Del Campo Nazca Saatchi & Saatchi, Buenos Aires, Argentina
A man with a baby’s head. Or is it a baby with a man’s body? Either way, it’s disconcerting. This point of this Argentine spot for the PS3 was that gamers should retain their childlike wonder as they grow older—or as the tagline says, “Live in a state of play.” Thus, we see our heroic but confused man-baby progressing through life in a literally regressive state, playing with his shaving cream and a female co-worker’s earring, giggling at remote-control car locks—but unable to hold back the tears when confronted with a barking dog. He’s an emotional wreck, which actually doesn’t seem like a very fun way to live. Still, the commercial does have its charms, with the expert special effects endowing the overgrown baby with a freaky quality that’s endearing as well.

1. National Domestic Violence Hotline


“It Rarely Stops”
Young & Rubicam, Chicago
Bruises and cuts heal on a battered woman’s face, only to bloom anew, in this harrowing PSA from @radical.media director Dave Meyers and Y&R in Chicago, depicting the endless cycle of domestic violence. The stark approach evocatively and depressingly illustrates the tagline, “It rarely stops.” The bathroom, with its door cracked open and spooky windows, heightens the feeling of unease. So does the dirge-y soundtrack (Emoto’s version of Peter Gabriel’s “Mercy Street”). It’s a quietly sad, sickening, hypnotic experience. So much so that the woman’s sudden movement at the end—presumably hearing her abuser return—is exceptionally jarring. But the spot also offers the possibility of freedom from stasis—a hotline number for when it’s time to stop hoping and start healing.

Source: Adweek

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