Feast, My Friend, for We Have a Long Road Ahead

On the other hand, there are some ad campaigns that survive the test of time because they are just that good. I think that’s what all of these advertisers shoot for; it’s just that some fall far, far below the mark. Then there are others that start out really good, but taper off as advertisers try to expand on their ideas. The campaign that comes to mind as an example of tapering off is the current UPS “whiteboard” ads. I loved the first ones, how he would erase one or two lines, draw some more lines in, and you’d have a completely different image than you had before. It was clever. The new ads that feature the animation aren’t as interesting to me.

Additionally, the separation between a great ad campaign and an annoying one often is a very fine line to walk. Some people may find the campaign to be utterly hilarious, while others may think it is the most annoying set of commercials they’ve ever seen.
Take, for example, the recent Snickers ad campaign, “Feast.” This line of ads features a viking, a pilgrim, a medieval lord, and a couple of other folks. The campaign is set in modern times, and the Snickers bar is their “feast.” It’s a bizarre line of ads that, for some reason, makes me laugh nearly every time I see one of the commercials in the line. Though I think they’re hilarious, I also realize that others probably don’t feel the same way that I do, and see the ads as really annoying or just plain weird. I feel the same way about the Burger King “The King” ads. Strange, yet somehow still funny if you can get past the creepiness factor.

At any rate, I’ve been trying to think of some of my favorite ad campaigns over the past few years. Here’s what I’ve come up with. Feel free to chime in with your favorites also!

The Mac Ads. Like Macs or not, they’re clever. They’re making somewhat of an impact, too. I recently noticed that Microsoft had its own response ad. Whether you agree with the ads or not, they’re fun, upbeat, and effective at taking shots at the opposition (and you don’t realize just how true they are until you actually make the switch over).
Though it’s a separate category, I also love the iTunes/iPod commercials. For awhile, it seemed like every song they used in those ads ended up in my playlist. Very good way to expose new artists.
Chic-Fil-A Cows. Though these ads are primarily in print, the “Eat Mor Chikin” cows are one of the longest-running ad campaigns that I can think of. I love this one, too. The subtle humor that they use on each ad is refreshing and clever.
FedEx Super Bowl Ads. The FedEx ad campaigns seem to always start with their Super Bowl ads, which, for the most part, are excellent. Their humor is usually understated, not quite as laugh-out-loud funny as other Super Bowl ads, yet they stick with you for quite a long time. Well said, Mr. Turkeyneck.
I already talked about it, but I love the Snickers Feast commercials. Click the link for the entire line.

Update: Alas! That is not the entire line of Feast shorts. You can find more here and here.

I’m sure there are plenty of others, but I’m drawing a blank at the moment. So, I’ll leave you with this. Enjoy!


1 Response to “Feast, My Friend, for We Have a Long Road Ahead”

  1. 1 Chris F September 25, 2008 at 7:37 am

    If you can hotlink that for me that would be great. This ad has been around since the very late 80’s early 90’s, and it STILL runs on TV (in Canada anyway). Very subtle yet powerful. To be hones I don’t know if I think that because I have been watching it for 20 years (familiarity breeds popularity?) but as far as ads go, I think it is exceptionally well done.

    Not fun or funny, mind you, but still. We are talking about good ads, right? =)

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