Old Spice, maker of aftershave, deodorant and so much more, has
gone wild with its television commercials the past few years.
I started out, as usual, to produce this “Amusing Monday” by
looking for videos with a water-related theme. I located the first
video on this page, which depicts a guy who cannot escape a fresh
shower no matter where he goes.
After that, I started looking at other Old Spice ads. The
company has produced so many weird videos it is hard to know where
to begin and end. Should we talk about the Old Spice “prank ads”?
Click here on “The
Flattering Man” and then hang on.
These prank ads, as Greg Kumparak of
Tech Crunch calls them, have been placed all over the Internet
as part of the Old Spice campaign. He includes links to eight
others in a story he posted in January.
Some people loved the ad that Old Spice calls “Momsong,” but
others were seriously weirded out or offended. It’s a bit more than
a mother’s lament that her son is coming of age with the help of
Old Spice: “Now he smells like a man and they treat him like one.”
At the end of the video, the screen includes links to two related
I’m more annoyed than amused by a shouting Terry Crews, who was
featured in a series of Old Spice commercials a couple years ago
and was called back this year to hock an Old Spice shaver. See this
video. In the commercial, he is both the person shaving and the
hair about to be shaved.
I could go on like this all day, but someone named Chris John
has compiled 21 Old Spice commercials in a single nine-minute video
on YouTube. Check out the second video player on this page.
Hunter Whitworth of
Paste magazine analyzes the Old Spice campaign, which is
engineered by the advertising firm Wieden+Kennedy of Portland,
“As fewer and fewer people watch live television—and as the
audience that does is spread over an increasing number of
channels—commercials are engineered with an eye towards their life
on the Internet; they are designed to go viral as much as they are
designed to sell you something.”
In his analysis, Whitworth makes an essential point: Unlike so
many funny commercials being created today, these Old Spice ads
actually place the product in the spotlight. As I once learned in
an advertising class, you can’t forget to mention what it is you
There are many more Old Spice oddities to check out. The
timeline on the Old
Spice Facebook page is one way to get a wide-angle view. You
can also visit the Wieden+Kennedy
website and its Old Spice
page. Of course, Old Spice has a YouTube channel,
in which one video after another can be watched.
Finally, if you would like to see how far Old Spice has come —
or fallen, depending on your viewpoint — check out the last video
player on this page.
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