Monday, April 13, 2009

Commercials: the last bastion of creativity

Okay, maybe the title is a bit of a stretch. But I must say new, quality TV shows and movies are getting extremely hard to come by; studios won't take risks, movies are heavily biased towards established franchises, and TV shows follow the same old formulas (he solves crimes but he's a MENTALIST and can make up stuff no one could really do!). Yes yes, I realize shows are often more about the characters but there still has to be something interesting for those characters to actually do. Independent and foreign films do still show the quirks and sparks that I appreciate, but I'm talking mainstream here.

As my Grandpa Leroy so often pointed out, commercials are one of the few things left watching on TV. I was sitting the other night admiring yet another AT&T Wireless commercial looking for the "signal bars" they have hidden in nearly every scene. When they, as Cingular, started this a long time ago they were explicit about pointing out the bars but now they are there just as a sort of Easter egg for those wanting to look for them. Though they do not spend a lot of time, effort, or money on that the thought is appreciated, and many of the below ones did incur significant costs in those categories. I've compiled a list of some of the better commercials I remember, there were a few I had vague recollections of but not enough to look them up so add your own in the comments.

Sony is usually a good source of commercials, even though I try to avoid their products (stop being so stubbornly proprietary!):
Superballs in the streets
Bunnies in the streets

Honda is another quality contributor:

Toyota has a creepy and fun one all at the same time:
Human Touch

HP "Out of the Picture" series:
Out of the Picture

Evolution of Beauty

Axe is consistently good too, but this one takes the cake:



And finally I think Apple's "I'm a Mac/PC" ads deserve a mention. Very funny and they are a stroke of brilliance. However, these do not entirely make up for the misery contained in their other commercials of recent years.

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