Hyperbole 2016 – First Quarter

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For the last nine years, we’ve divided up the Super Bowl and taken a look at the best and worst executions on the world’s largest/most expensive ad stage.  And this year, the Hyperbole tradition continues, starting with our Creative Director, Dennis Bonifer.

I’m sure when the NFL envisioned the first Super Bow….err the “Big Game” 50 years ago, they had no idea that people would be talking about and breaking down the commercials more than the game itself.  But here we are 50 years later and ad agencies have almost become as important to the game as the starting quarterbacks…well almost.

Once again Current360 is carrying on our tradition of doing the conversation and sharing our thoughts of the winners and losers of the commercial break. After winning the virtual C360 coin toss, I elected to receive and give my take on my personal favorites from the first quarter.

The more I think about it, some of the commercials felt like an homage to my childhood. The sweet unexpected cameo by Scott Baio (Avacados from Mexico) and Apartments.com’s use of the theme from the Jeffersons (the bit with “beans don’t burn on the grill” was pretty damn funny to me) might have scored high with the “The Dennis & Jimmy D D-List Celebrity Hall of Fame”, but weren’t my favorites of the quarter. The three that stood out to me were Snickers, Mountain Dew and Doritos.

Typically the commercials that tend to draw the most attention are ones from new campaigns. However, I still really liked Snickers latest addition to their “you’re not yourself when you’re hungry” campaign. I thought the pan up Willem Dafoe’s legs  from the Marilyn Monroe classic “Seven Year Itch” was just wacky enough, but still worked with their previous spots. Like Danny Trejo in last years Brady Bunch spoof, Defoe has one of those great tough guy personas, so seeing him in heels and the infamous white dress added to whole comedic effect. Even though stand alone spots gardner the most attention, I feel like staying true to their campaign was a better played move.

Mountain Dew’s “Puppy Monkey Baby” was just weird and will haunt my dreams for weeks to come. But, when you consider that males 16 to mid 20‘s are the biggest consumer of energy drinks, my guess is that most of them loved the spot and it was right on target. I do know my kids, although still years away from the target demo, loved it. They immediately started laughing and chanting “puppy! monkey! baby!” It’s definitely memorable and has a strange earworm-quality to it. Sometimes weird for weirdness sake does work and I thought it worked really well here.

Lastly, even though I thought Doritos “Ultrasound” started out like something from the ever-growing “brocentric” genre (seriously, I just typed ‘brocentric commercial genre’) I ended up liking it. I thought the gag humor kept getting funnier. It might have been a bit crude, but come on, Doritos aren’t highbrow. Doritos are a guilty pleasure. They’re junk food. I thought the spot was slapstick funny and my guess is that the average Doritos consumer probably liked it too.

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Photo of Current360 Associate Creative Director Robert Womack

Rob Womack

If there’s anyone who can honestly say, “Been there, done that,” it’s Rob. After traveling the world for seven years in his 20’s, Rob went to LA and started working in film production. Then it was off to New York, where he learned how to program, which eventually brought him back home to Louisville to build websites. At Current360, Rob heads up our in-house production studio, creating all things digital for our clients — videos, commercials, radio spots, and a lot more. 

When he’s at home, Rob likes to create things like homemade kombucha and music.