ADOTAS — Ready yourself, it’s going to be a thrill-ride – with a week drenched in speed, daring and action. That’s right, AdLand has set pulses racing this week, with Volvo Trucks teaming up with an action superstar and rally legend Ken Block back with another installment in his incredible Gymkhana series.
So put on your seatbelt and sit tight – this week is all about the need… the Need For Speed!
5. John St.: ExFEARiential
Nobody makes fun of the absurdities of the advertising business as well as the Toronto creative agency. Previous efforts include “Catvertising” and “Case Studies”.
So with 2013 being hijacked by some brand hijinks, thanks to ads such as Pepsi “Test Drive” and LG’s “Ultra Reality”, it was only really a matter of time before someone decided to spoof this new trend.
Although some ads this year have being particularly brutal, John St feels brands have actually not gone far enough. So they have taken it up a notch in their three-minute clip.
So rather then using actors, they use real criminals. Sending someone to space is great, but to really get emotions really going John St promises to leave them there. The result? According to the ad, a massive increase in lawsuits, but brand recall has gone up.
It’s a fantastic video that is definitely worth watching, particularly if you work in the ad business.
So far the ad has been viewed more than 163,000 times and shared 6,750 times.
4. Russian Olympic Committee: Олимпийские перемены
Getting generally buffeted around or crushed is one thing, but imagine having to perform 30 squats before you even get on the train.
That’s the idea behind a new health-conscious stunt designed to promote the upcoming Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, which kicks off in February. Moscow officials and the Russian Olympic Committee have installed a number of vending machines which asks commuters to do 30 squats. In return they get a free ticket. A train in Moscow costs 30 rubles, so it’s essentially a ruble for every squat completed.
Sounds easy enough, right? Only problem is the machine can tell if you are cheating.
According to the video’s text, the Russian Olympic Committee is trying to encourage a “healthy passion for sport” and “joy from being active”. And to be honest, looking on the faces of the people doing it, it doesn’t seem to be that gruelling at all.
The ad is also showing its physical prowess on the Unruly Viral Video Chart, with more than 60,000 shares since its launch, making the spot the ninth most shared ad of the week.
3. Degage Ministries: Homeless Veteran Timelapse Transformation
Maybe sometimes what’s on the outside does matter. A new haircut and some nice new clothes may seem superficial, but – according to a new charity video – for U.S. veteran Jim Wolf, it is just what he needed to get his life back on track.
The ex-military man has battled alcoholism, poverty and homelessness since leaving the Army decades ago. But he agreed to take part in a new video campaign organized by veterans charity Degage Ministries and has since started to turn his life around.
Inspired by Dove’s Evolution ad, the powerful three-minute video shows Wolf getting a haircut, a shave and a nice new suit. It may seem like a small thing, but the clip says that since filming, the 54-year-old has been attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and is also due to receive his own accommodation.
The video has also been a huge hit on the web. Since its launch on November 6, the video has attracted more than 222,000 shares, making it the fifth biggest branded video of the last seven days.
But not everyone is happy, with some claiming the issue of homelessness shouldn’t be used “to make art”. Speaking to UK newspaper Metro, Patrick Cameron, one of the producers of the film, said: “This doesn’t show that he is fixed, that he is in recovery, that he is going to stay cleaned up,” he said.
“But he was for a moment and that could lead to something else.”
2. Volvo Trucks: The Epic Split feat. Van Damme
And now at the 53, the ageing action star has managed to pull off possibly the most impressive stunt of his life – performing the splits in between two moving vehicles.
In the latest stunt-based ad from Volvo, the Belgian star folds his arms and then balances perfectly between the two reversing trucks with his legs in a horizontal position.
It’s a truly wonderful experience, aided by a superb voiceover by the man himself. He says, “I’ve had my ups and downs. My fair share of bumpy roads and heavy winds. That’s what made me what I am today.
“Now I stand here before you. What you see is a body crafted to perfection. A pair of legs engineered to defy the laws of physics and a mindset to master the most epic of splits.”
It’s a fantastic piece of creative, which has been performing some heroics of its own on the Unruly Viral Video Chart, amassing more than 350,000 shares in just 24 hours.
But the question everyone wants to know is: did he actually do the stunt, or was it just computer trickery? Well, according to Volvo, although some safety equipment was digitally removed, no computer trickery was involved on camera and the stunt is genuine.
Good enough for us!!
1. Need For Speed: Ken Block’s Gymkhana SIX
That’s right, Ken Block – the star of DC Shoes’ Gymkhana, the most successful branded web series of all time – is back in the driving seat, and he’s even more of a tyre-squealing hooligan than last time.
Fresh from his GRC 2013 win in Las Vegas, the motor-racing star takes to the tarmac like a duck to water in the 6th part of the popular web series.
However, for the first time, it’s not DC Shoes the racing star is promoting. Instead, it’s the latest instalment in the popular EA videogame franchise “Need for Speed”. Block was the game’s official ‘Racing Advisor’.
Fans of his loud, drifty smoking style will not be disappointed. There’s more slow motion action, guys on Segways, Go Pros getting annihilated and a wrecking ball, without Miley Cyrus clinging to it, chucked in for good measure. If you don’t consider yourself a petrolhead, you might want to lower the volume as this one may drive you up the wall.
However, the one question on everyone’s lips is will this new ad outstrip the enormous success of its predecessors. Well, only time will tell, but one thing is for sure: it’s got a lot of ground to cover – fast.
For example, based on the top 100 most shared ads of all time, the Gymkhana web series has made DC Shoes the most shared brand of all time, with 10.73 million shares in total. It’s also worth noting that four of the five Gymkhana ads appear in the top 40 most shared ads of all time, including three in the top 10.
It’s certainly a tough act to follow, so fasten your seatbelts!