I criticized the quality of this year’s Super Bowl advertising in “Super Bowl Mediocre Marketing,” and I would like to offer some ads from the past year that are of “Big Game” quality. I cheated in my search by combing through others’ best of ‘14 lists, but hey—the folks at Adweek get paid to discuss advertising. I make no money here. The first video shows exactly what I expect from a Super Bowl commercial. Behold, Lurpak’s “Adventure Awaits”:
Wonderful! Just wonderful! I remember reading something in Maritain’s treatment of aesthetics wherein he argues that we delight in recognizing something when that recognition comes in an unexpected way. This is definitely true. No one gets excited from knowing that a goose is a goose, but a man experiences joy when his mind puts a visual puzzle together to see a common object that was obscured before his mental faculties got to work on it. Similarly, people love to find hidden “Easter Eggs” in film and in paintings. The splendor of this commercial works in a similar way by exposing the commonplace in a spectacular fashion.
Adweek’s article explains that Christmas ads are the British equivalent of Super Bowl ads. I knew that the Brits liked their Yuletide tube watching—every B.B.C import show tends to have Christmas specials. I never considered, though, the commercials during those specials. Well, here is one such ad from the department store John Lewis, “Monty the Penguin”:
Coca-Cola Life has a lovely family affirming commercial from Argentina, “Ser Padres”:
I saw this commercial earlier in the year; it must have been featured on a site that I read . . . perhaps from Laura Wood or Fr. Z???
The following Save the Children’s “Most Shocking Second a Day Video” counteracts apathy well, but how are “globally” aware people to avoid the desensitization that the commercial decries? There is too much to care about—so, it makes sense to draw boundaries of concern. Still, it is one of the most intelligently executed public service announcements that I have seen.
Another moving ad from Britain is Sainbury’s Christmas spot, which commemorates the Great War on its one hundredth anniversary:
Last but not least is Procter & Gamble’s “Mom” campaign during the Sochi Olympics, such as the following: