This Ad’s Music is a Resounding “Meh.”

I couldn’t agree more with Ad Age’s Ken Wheaton. I’m wearing Levi’s right now (and have for years) “always despite the advertising, never because of it.” 

Slick, trendy, vaguely scandalous—there are a lot of underwear ass shots and rainy make-outs—this ad employs the same marketing tactics Abercrombie and its associated brands have used for years. Sexy, fun times sell clothes (although I suppose if you look at Abercrombie’s recent numbers, maybe not).

The ad is watchable, but the music sucks, and the tag is nonsense. “Just don’t bore them” doesn’t quite roll off the tongue, although I do give FCB credit for personifying the product. How literary of them.

FCB’s choice in Jamie N Commons for the soundtrack is forgettable—he sounds like classic rock, but not half as good. I’m sure inoffensive was the goal, but something with a little more edge would’ve made all the difference here. All demographics like good music, especially Levi’s wearers, and this song is a resounding “meh.”

I’m probably just disappointed; nothing can top the Wieden + Kennedy Walt Whitman ad.

Early Facebook Defectors

Apparently, teenagers and 20-somethings aren’t the only ones who think Facebook is uncool. The above link is a post by Eat24, an online food delivery service, explaining why the company quit Facebook (Hint: it has to do with Facebook’s decline and the resulting new algorithm). Eat24 has a strong online presence and interesting content for their foodie customers. If a young, tech company with an emphasis on SM and digital marketing can’t make Facebook work, who can? Enjoy the free PR, Eat24, because I guarantee media outlets will latch onto yet another blow to Facebook’s shaky image.


I Can’t Remember the Last Time I Laughed at a McDonald’s Ad

The latest in a line of Taco Bell promotions for their new breakfast menu, this is a cheeky “screw you” to the current fast food breakfast king, McDonald’s. I love it when brands get into cat fights, and with these clever ads by Deutsch Los Angeles, Taco Bell subverts McDonald’s dominance without seeming mean-spirited. I’m a big fan of the McGriddle, but I’m inclined to give the taco waffle a try.

Facebook is Going through a Mid-Life Crisis

Thumbs up, loser

I came of age in the golden age of Facebook. I got one my sophomore year of high school—in 2007, which was admittedly a little late—three years after its inception. This was before obscure family members and brands clogged newsfeeds, before high schools blocked it on their servers, and before social media activity dispersed across several platforms. It was a one-stop shop for stalking, and it was beautiful.

The media has recently latched onto a debate over Facebook’s death (which may be greatly exaggerated). Whether or not that incendiary Princeton study is true, we all have the same sinking feeling—Facebook is kind of lame now. It’s filled with Buzzfeed and Upworthy articles, comments from Grandma, and event invites for every stupid organization from anyone and everyone you’ve ever known (Why are you inviting me to your fundraiser in Colorado? I live in Indiana, dummy). Facebook has become your spinster man-aunt. You still visit out of nostalgia and duty, but her house is starting to smell like cat piss.

What’s strange is Mark Zuckerberg seems proud of the fact that users share more third-party content than ever. Why would I want to read about my acquaintance’s inane political views? Facebook’s appeal lies in our collective craving for exhibitionism and voyeurism. We want attention/validation through our activity and juicy insight into others’ social lives through theirs. When people stop interacting and start sharing links, Facebook’s addictiveness wanes.

I’m sure Facebook is aware of the issue. I think the new newsfeed algorithm, which truncates organic reach for brand content/posts, is the company’s response. Mark Zuckerberg’s grasping at straws (and ad dollars) though; it doesn’t fix the main problem. Let’s be honest, we login to Facebook because we want to know who from high school got fat, not what Buzzfeed article restored Aunt Carol’s “faith in humanity.”

This Ad Is So Bad It Makes Me Think About Death

I know it’s been over a month since the Superbowl, but the ads this year were so disappointing that I needed a couple of weeks to digest and come to terms with their mediocrity. Instead of choosing my favorite, I’ve sifted through this year’s subpar offering to find the lumpiest, most ham-handed ad of the event: The Bob Dylan ad. Now you may be surprised why I didn’t chose the slightly off-putting and wholly uncool ad for the new Cadillac. No, instead, I chose the even more uncool and less relevant Bob Dylan “America wins at everything” spot. You know why? Because this ad is not just irrelevant, it’s downright depressing. Even if you (like myself) don’t really care about Bob Dylan anymore, it’s demoralizing  to see one of the great anti-establishment figures of the 60s working for The Man. The only thing more depressing than Bob Dylan—creator of Tambourine Man—reading a string of nonsense written by some hack copywriter (“Is there anything more American than America?” Really, is there anything more stupid than this stupid, stupid sentence?) is if he actually wrote that crap himself. Either way, the unintended takeaway from this ad is American folk heroes become washed-up, corporate sellouts. Bob Dylan’s age and resignation are so distracting the “America” stuff doesn’t even register. I’m not exaggerating, I’m 22 years old, and this ad reminded me of my own mortality. That is bleak.

Imagine how the ad’s targeted baby-boomers must feel—probably like dust in the wind.

Hands up who’s heard of Tom McElligott?

Exactly the type of advertising I love: high on the visuals, intelligence, and humor.


It’s a shame, he ushered in a new, sassier way of talking.
His work felt like it was written by a very smart lawyer with a great sense of humour.
He influenced a generation.
But there’s almost no evidence of his existence on the internet.
Lurzer’s Archive have removed his name from his agency’s work, all the Fallon McElligott work is now credited to Fallon. I’m pretty sure that Pat Fallon didn’t write any of them, Tom McElligott wrote or Creative Directed all of them.
Even the publishers of Luke Sullivan’s great “Hey Whipple” book have have never heard of him:
Screen shot 2014-02-14 at 15.20.08

I can’t find a lot of information on him out there, so I can’t write too much, and I certainly can’t vouch for the chronology of the work below, but I’ll have a first stab and update it if complaints come in. (If anyone does know more, has higher res…

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