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Seen and noted

Guest Judge: Brian Murray, ECD, Zulu Alpha Kilo, Toronto

 GUEST JUDGE /BEST AD OF THE WEEK   WORLDWIDE    June 06, 2022 16:44 (Edited: June 07, 2022 02:44)
Winner: Virgin Voyages 'No Kids on the Ocean'. Virgin Voyages 'No Kids on the Ocean' appeals to me as a parent who is enthusiastically planning my own vacation without my 3 kids. I find myself experiencing burn out from too many ads taking themselves too seriously over the past couple of years, so I am happy to celebrate a fun little ad that I think real people will find really cute and amusing.

Runner-up: Heineken 'The Closer'. I decided to declare Heineken's 'The Closer' as this week's runner-up. First of all, it looks like it cost a lot of money. It's definitely well produced and moves along at a brisk pace reminiscent of ads like Wealth Simple's 'Mad World' or Apple 'Underdogs'. It's promoting Heineken's new Bluetooth enabled bottle opener that puts your computer into sleep mode when you crack open an ice-cold Heineken, which is a pretty cool and novel idea if it works. I had to deduct points from the video though because when it was over, I wasn't sure the device was real, how it worked, or how to get one. So, even though the video is over two minutes long, it doesn't quite land its message clearly enough.

Shout out to the Veet Men video with the two flying testicles. If the CGI had been better, I might have voted the film higher. And I think the Dirty Talk video might have the best shot at awards of the bunch - only when judges are forced to watch it. But I don't think people in the real world would watch the whole thing.

Winner: Crediseguro 'Piano'. What I like about this ad is that it's a simple layout that I haven't seen before. A falling piano is a bit of a lazy cliche but when I see even the one execution, it's easy to imagine coming up with many, many more using the same concept. Also, I give it bonus marks because it's for insurance, which isn't the sexiest category.

Runner-up: Stranger Things Season 4 'Stranger Things: The Hawkins Post'. The Hawkins Post is a solid effort that will catch consumers' attention and drum up some awareness for the new season of Stranger Things. It has a few fun things going on with the fake news stories and "upside down" ads, but I have seen the fake newspaper approach multiple times, so I couldn't crown this my winner.

Winner: Ribena 'When You've Rin-bena Bit Left Out'. Last week, Queen Elizabeth II was celebrating her "Platinum Jubilee", meaning 70 years on the throne. As an aside, if HRM can make it to 80 years, it will be an "Oak Jubilee", which seems like quite a downgrade. Anyway, when I took one look at this Ribena (pronounced rye-BEEN-ah) OOH stunt, I was immediately impressed with the foresight and agility it must have taken to make this happen. I also gave it a quick google and it looked to me like this "billboard" has already achieved a tremendous amount of earned coverage from the mainstream media, not just industry publications.

Runner-up: Earth Hour 'Turn Off Your Brand'. I've seen reverse type used by web browsers and websites to conserve energy, but for some reason, nobody (that I have seen) has thought to use it on OOH digital boards before - and it has been used to great effect here. I think it strengthens the idea that they got multiple brands to participate too.

Winner: Dot Pad 'First Smart Tactile Graphics Display for Visually Impaired People'. This seems like a pretty cool and useful invention, so it took the win against the other more "traditional" campaigns in the shortlist. I checked out the link at the end of the video and it's not available to buy yet. Hopefully it ends up being a real product that helps blind people and not just a one-off agency prototype designed to help win awards.

Runner-up: BMO 'Rainbow Deposits'. This seems like a simple enough idea that uses a cool piece of tech and will donate money to a good cause. Also, it's an ad for a bank, so bonus marks for getting something interesting made in a tough category. Murray.jpg
This week's guest judge is Brian Murray, executive creative director at Zulu Alpha Kilo, Toronto, which was recently named Campaign US Independent Agency of the Year and The Drum UK Agency of the Year.

Brian has worked in both Toronto, CAN, and London, UK, alongside many talented people and has received hundreds of industry awards. He is one of the only creative directors in Canada to have ever won multiple Cannes Lions Grand Prix trophies. He was a key contributor to a Grand Clio in Creative Effectiveness, a One Show Best in Discipline in Creative Effectiveness and a Penta Pencil. Also, Ogilvy Canada won more Effie Canada effectiveness awards than any other agency during Brian's time there as chief creative Ooficer.

Brian was ranked the #1 Creative in Canada in the 2021 One Show rankings and the #2 Chief Creative Officer in Canada on the 2022 Strategy Magazine Creative Report Card ​- and he has an MBA from the University of Toronto. (Advertising is a business after all.)

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