Friday Round-Up: 5 New Video Ads You Should Watch Right Now (11/1/2013)

11.01.2013 by David Waterhouse
Lynx, The Guardian and Mini among hottest social video campaigns of the week

Lynx is ready to turn ordinary people into space cadets, a Mini does a somersault and a goat which screams like a person. Yes, it's just another week in Adland.

But which new ads have been setting the Viral Video Chart alight over the last seven days? Which ads have been the talk of the online world this week? Well, here are our five picks:



5. The Guardian: Weekend

We Brits love our weekends. Two days of bacon sandwiches, football and attempting to do DIY. And where would the Great British Weekend be without extra large editions of our favourite newspapers? Hugh Grant is here to tell us how The Guardian is making weekends even better.

Hugh Grant hasn't had much luck with newspapers in the last few years. As a victim of the phone hacking scandal, the foppish comic actor has been outspoken about the need for improvements in journalistic integrity. He continues this message in the latest ad for The Guardian and its Sunday edition The Observer.

Grant praises the titles for their honesty, commitment to journalistic excellence and integrity. That integrity filters into everything they do. So when the sister papers say they have an important announcement to make, you know it's not just some cheesy advertising gimmick.

Cue dramatic editing, movie trailer voiceovers and explosions. Flames lick at the screen as a couple discuss salmon recipes and modernism exhibitions. The action flicks over to a boardroom, where the marketing bods announce that the trademarking of the weekend. 

The clip is filled with even more explosions as the world starts discussing The Guardian And Observer Weekend (TM). It's surprising how quickly the world seems to have forgotten the simple, humble weekend. And Grant's promise of serious, grown-up journalism.

It's a surreal, disjointed clip that uses its three-minute length to hammer home one joke with total determination. Produced by BBH, the clip isn't as slick or as a powerful as the Three Little Pigs ad the agency produced for The Guardian last year.



4. Mini: First-Ever Unassisted BackFlip

The Mini is one of Britain's cultural icons. Appearing in the London Olympics' opening ceremony, the cheeky little runabout has been driven by our best musicians and starred in some of our best movies. But now a Frenchman has got his hands on one of our beloved cars and is making it behave in a most un-gentlemanly way.

The classic Mini was an icon of British cool, whether it was packed (snugly) with The Beatles or scooting Michael Caine across the silver screen. But all that is ruined now that Guerlain Chicherit is behind the wheel, attempting to pull off the first-ever unassisted backflip.

Mini's latest ad stars the French stunt driver putting a suped-up version of the compact car through its paces, only it's not so compact any more. Chicherit's vehicle is one-of-a-kind, looking like a monster truck that borrowed a Mini's clothes, despite them being way too small.

But don't judge this book by its cover, this vehicle is built for one purpose only, to sprint hell-for-leather at a ramp, flip end-over-end in the air and land safely.

Red Bull attempted a similar stunt in 2009, without success. Mini's teaser shows Chicherit and his Franken-Mini taking to the air gracefully and...well, we don't really know, the ad ends at this point. 



3. Doritos: Goat

What do a goat, two dogs, a blind man and a man wearing a wedding dress all have in common? They all feature in the final five for Doritos' annual Crash The Super Bowl competition, that's what.

Yep, the five finalists, created by ordinary people, have been whittled down to just five, with the top two most popular, as voted for by Facebook users, being aired during Super Sunday on February 3.  

The winner will even get win bundles of cash if their ad appears in the top three places on USA Today's Ad Meter. They will also get the chance to work with director Michael Bay on the new Transformers movie.

But which ad is the likely winner? Well, to be honest, it's a tough call. This year's entries are, quite frankly, poor. The ads that made me smile were 'Goat', although I still don't quite understand what is going on, and 'Road Chip'. Going on our embryonic Super Bowl 2013 Chart, which tracks the numbers of shares each ad attracts, Goat For Sale currently leads, with just under 300 shares.



2. Apple: Dream

You're collecting your Oscar while the woman of your dreams hangs on your arm and that bully who used to torment you is cruelly ridiculed by the world at large. If only dreams did come true.

So while you sleepily enjoy your fantasy, don't let the slightly disappointing real world interrupt. According to this Apple ad, it needn't be your iPhone that wakes you from a dreamy slumber.

Starring the tennis playing Williams sisters, the clip is narrated by Hollywood actor Jeff Daniels. It seems Daniels is determined to beat the champ siblings in a hotly-contested game of table tennis. Venus and Serena rush madly around the table as Daniels' disembodied hand calmly returns every shot.

Daniels somehow manages to do all of this while also explaining the smartphone's Do Not Disturb feature, which allows users to screen incoming calls, making sure they are only woken up by the most important. Luckily, Daniels is making use of the feature, because he'd hate to be woken before he's beaten the sisters.

It's not the first time Apple have used celebrities to showcase features of its smartphones, with John MalokvichSamuel L Jackson and Zooey Deschanel recently stopping by to chat with Siri. 



1. Lynx (Axe): Space

When Lynx's brand director Gaston Vaneri announced that in 2013 they wanted to take the company's "interaction with its fans to new heights", he wasn't joking.

The personal hygiene brand has just announced they sending 22 lucky people into space. No, really. Take that Red Bull!!

The announcement was made in a new Lynx (or Axe, if you prefer) ad, launched yesterday, across 60 territories, featuring Buzz Aldrin, the second man on the moon.

"Space travel for everyone is the next frontier in the human experience," Aldrin says in the new spot. "I'm thrilled that Lynx is giving the young people of today such an extraordinary opportunity to experience some of what I've encountered in space."

Until February 3, people from 60 countries can apply for 22 spots at the newly-opened Lynx Apollo Space Academy. Those lucky enough to be chosen, will travel to the edge of space and back in a private spaceship.

So what does this mean for Lynx's first-ever Super Bowl ad? Well, apparently the final ad in the campaign, titled 'Lifeguard', created by BBH, will offer one more spot on the Lynx spacecraft.

Well, for a brand famous for its raunchy ads featuring half-naked women, it has to be the sexiest campaign they have ever launched (am I the only one thinking Moonraker here?).

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