Soft porn ad break: Megan Fox for Armani

Megan Fox is the new face and body for Emporio Armani Women’s Underwear. She takes over from Victoria Beckham who is probably too old, too scrawny, or both.

More Ad Outrage: Prowling Cougars Under Attack

We’ve looked at a number of ad campaigns here at The Notes.

In the modern cultural environment, where advertising images and viral campaigns are ubiquitous Continue reading

Hey Hey! That’s Raci… Oh, actually maybe it’s not.

Last year there were a number of occasions when the Australian sense of “humour” raised hackles in the USA and led to a large amount of international media comment on endemic Australian racism. We blogged about a couple of those awkward humour moments in 2009, here at Continue reading

2100 calories of Windows 7 promotion

Never try to put anything in your mouth that is bigger than your head

Never try to put anything in your mouth that is bigger than your head

Is this one of the weirdest promotional tie-ins ever?

To celebrate the release of Microsoft’s Windows 7, Burger King in Japan is serving up a Continue reading

Dove’s Confusing Message for Women

This particular commercial won two Golden Lions at Cannes. At its most basic, the dominant message that the advertisement wants to convey to us is this: the images we see on billboards, on television, and magazines are fake, constructed, an idealised form of Continue reading

Volkswagen’s “Theory of Fun”

Volkswagen has been going to to some strange places with its advertising of late. Not long ago we posted the Dudeism ad which connected Volkswagen and philosophy. Now, out of Sweden, there is a new “campaign” located at the Rolighetsteorin website, which translates as “Theory of Fun”.

The idea behind the campaign is a series of “projects” (seen in the clips below) designed to transform the public environment in some manner that will change people’s behaviour in a socially beneficial way.

In the first of these clips out of Sweden, a subway staircase is changed into a giant piano keyboard, complete with piano tones when it is walked upon. Supposedly, this resulted in 66% more people using the stairs — a healthy alternative to the laziness of the escalator right next to it.

The second of these “projects” added sound effects to public rubbish bins to encourage their correct usage. These resulted in 70% more litter being placed in the bins. Let’s see where all this ends up….

As with most modern advertising, note that none of these ads show the product — the car.

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Mad Men 101 – Advertising for Men

A while ago, in the post Thank you Mad Men…, we took a look at the pioneering work done by those heroes of popular culture, advertising executives, without whom we would all be perched high on huge wads of money, unable to decide what to buy.

Convinced they were the creative forces that define and shape culture, they scrutinised society and then told us about ourselves. Not ones to miss a trick, they also decided men and women appeared to like different things… but how to sell to the different sexes?

Let’s have a look at the first of those problems… Continue reading

Susan Sarandon – Younger Woman

It’s always odd when you come across early appearances by now-famous movie stars. Especially when the movie star in question is usually cast as the experienced, love-hungry older woman.

Here’s a young Susan Sarandon in one of her earlier roles. But watch carefully, at the end of the ad the director obviously told her, “Show us what’s on your mind… what do you want to do with this guy you just met?”

Zoiks! We can see how she got all those older woman parts later in her career.

She looks as though she’s going to eat him alive!

Women, Orgasms and Money (Warning: Misogynist at Work)

Ask yourself this simple question: Why is it that we find this advertisement for jewelry so amusing?


The answer to this question lies in the way in which the two images succinctly capture a number of recognisable stereotypes and myths about men, women, and sex.

The first of these myths is that women are attracted Continue reading

Adolf Hitler Sex Ad

Occasionally you come across commerials that may have seemed like a good idea at the writing and production phase, but in practice the finished product doesn’t really connect with the audience.

The following ad for AIDS awareness, due to start screening in Germany from next week,  is meant to shock the audience. It shows a couple having sex. The soft focus, dim lighting and editing deliberately prevent the viewers from seeing the faces of the participants until the very end.

Then, the  ‘shocking’ revelation: we see that the male is, in fact, Continue reading

Three minute ad for 50th anniversary of Olympus PEN Camera

I’m not really a fan of those blog sites that just post up myriad, pretty YouTube clips that they’ve discovered. Sometimes, however, you do come across something that is pretty special. The first time I watched this commercial, I immediately assumed that Continue reading

Thank you Mad Men…

Advertising executives often believe their images and snappy slogans are the defining drivers behind cultural change. This belief is solidified at events such as the Clio Awards which aim to “celebrate and reward creative excellence, honoring a powerful form of communication and its impact on modern culture“. After a gallon of sponsor’s champagne and a snout full of Colombian marching powder, the moist-eyed “creatives” pick up their statuettes, humbled in the knowledge that their “creative excellence” has changed the world.

Are they right?

Let’s turn back the glossy pages of history and find out….

Continue reading

From Jedi to Dude-ism

Jedi grew into a (tongue-in-cheek) religion following the vast popularity of the Star Wars movies. Now Volkswagen are trying to do the same with the cult classic Coen Brothers movie The Big Lebowski. Based on the zen-like attitude of the film’s main character, ‘The Dude’, the car company promotes the new religion of Dude-ism.

I guess it goes to show the power of movies as modern day mythmakers!