The Leith Agency has toned down its award-winning, but controversial,
Red T campaign for Tennent’s Lager with two new television commercials
called ‘optimisT’ and ‘pessimisT’.
Both continue to use words that highlight a bold red ‘T’ - an
advertising icon as familiar to the Scottish as McDonald’s golden
arches. However, the two new executions are less violent in nature than
earlier work, notably last year’s ‘sadisT’ and ‘masochisT’ spots.
The films show how two different individuals react to receiving only a
half pint of Tennent’s.
The first, ‘pessimisT’, features a drinker who becomes emotionally
distraught as he begins to realise that he is only getting a half pint
of Tennent’s. By contrast, in the second ad, ‘optimisT’, a man looks at
his half pint in jubilation. The two executions, which are each 20
seconds long, have been deliberately planned to top and tail a single
A poster blitz also breaks next week, showing a pint of Tennent’s
sitting on a mound of earth, set against a dramatic skyscape with the
headline, ‘heaven on earTh’.
Previous work in the campaign also drew on the dualities of human
nature, but came under fire for being too violent. In ‘masochisT’, for
example, a drinker tortures himself with an elaborate device to prevent
him from reaching for the lager, while in ‘sadisT’ a sadist refuses to
allow a gagged prisoner to even have a mouthful of Tennent’s.
The two new ads were created by the art director, Gareth Howells and the
copywriter, Dougal Wilson. They were directed by Kristian Levring
through Blarke and Sonne Levring.