Wednesday, August 5, 2009

spilled milk / toilet paper

Got stuck in traffic this weekend, there was a milk truck that had flipped over on the freeway, which caused a massive backup. The scene of the accident was pretty bizarre, a mashed up tanker on its side, with a haz-mat crew scurrying around, trying to figure out what 50,000 gallons of spilled milk actually means.

Afterwards, we stopped at Safeway to grab a bite to eat. I was feeling beat down, and wandered slowly through the aisles, while the resident "sandwich artist" put together my chicken club on foccacia.

Then I saw this:
I've never really paid much attention to the photos that line the miles of aisles of product at a big store. But this time it was different -- I felt like Jim Carrey in the Truman Show when he finally realizes that the joke is on him. Does everyone know how crazy the world is?

There is someone on this planet (my guess is that it was the "client") that came up with the idea to shoot a puppy playing with a roll of Cottonelle toilet paper. What are they trying to say? Do puppies wipe their asses with Cottonelle? Or is the TP soft like a puppy? If so, should one just wipe their ass with a puppy instead? What would that feel like? Which part of the puppy would one use?

Then there is an Art Director out there that has to sketch up this "concept" and suffer through countless excruciating meetings while the details are hashed out: How "soft" should the puppy look? How much paper is left on the roll? Oh, and make sure the paper cover's the puppy's balls!

Then there is a photographer somewhere out there that shot this picture. As well as a retoucher that made the puppy and the TP just perfect. And they were probably paid very handsomely to make this unbelievable image.

All in the name of big, dumb advertising, that looks dumb and treats people like dummies.


Anonymous said...

don't rock the boat Jamie , all that branding , polishing , faking , pays mortgages .

Jamie Kripke said...

Hey, I am all for branding and polishing (not so sure about faking) but it's a bummer when that much attention and talent is lavished on a dumb idea.

Smart advertising builds brands, and sells more product, which in turn increases advertising budgets, and creates more work. Everyone wins.

What's the point of using talented creative professionals and briefcases full of money to execute a dumb idea?

It all goes back to the concept. If the dumb ones just go in the trash can right away, then we are all safe (client included) from relying on a puppy playing with toilet paper to pay our mortgages.

Anonymous said...

if that puppy had gone in the trash though , what we in england know as the andrex puppy , wouldn't have built the leading brand and stayed there for the last 30 years making kimberley clark , the fat admen , and that shit streaked puppy millionaires .
It's the longest running consistent tv ad campaign in british history . Those admen have done what they're good at , took a dumb idea and made it work so much so that if you asked anyone in britain what they associate with toilet roll 95% wouldn't say a labrador puppy they'd say the andrex puppy .
maybe the rest of the world has been spared the puppy onslaught ?