PRIVATE VIEW: Andrew Cracknell, the executive creative director of Bates UK

You know that moment when you wake up in the middle of a meeting

and feel compelled to demonstrate that you really haven't been asleep by

saying something pertinent? And what you say is inevitably

gibberish?



(I once asked the significance of JASOND across the top of the chart

being discussed. The presenter looked helplessly around for someone else

to break the news and then said, ever so slowly, " Er ... that would be

July, August, September ...")



That's how I felt when I woke up in the middle of the Archers

commercial.



But no words would come. It was just before the "What a smug girl I am"

end shot, obligatory in all those commercials where girls stick it to

men. What a smug girl she is. Mind you, it's yet another brief for yet

another sticky drink; it doesn't get any easier.



Mother continues to solve its Batchelors briefs by throwing the food all

over the place. Its a fantastic agency and, like all step-change

agencies since DDB in New York in the 60s, part of the key to its

freshness is recognition of just how important our propositions and

advertisements are in real people's lives.



Which is not very.



So the irreverence with which it treats its products is as refreshing as

its strategies are radical. My concern is that the executions are

becoming too repetitive. In Cup A Soup we have funny enough scripts, but

guess what? The stuff ends up everywhere but the stomach. And we even

have the personalised "big voice" voiceover fresh from the excellent ITV

Digital campaign, itself via another route fresh from Fortnum and

Mason.



Does this matter, as long as it works? In the hard world of sales and

brand share, no, not at all. But if you regularly fall back on parody

and self-parody, you can get out of the habit of genuine

origination.



Which brings us to its 40 seconds of funky nuns for Magic TV. Genuine

origination is what Mother has been so jaw-droppingly good at since the

day it set up. My reservation about these two campaigns is mostly to do

with their creators' own previous high standards.



Genuine origination could also truly have been claimed for the original

Ferrero Rocher commercial; truly, no-one had ever genuinely originated

anything like it before. The new print campaign has less of the

naffness, even some elegance, but awful though the reasoning behind this

may be to contemplate, perhaps less of the impact.



But Lupo is stunning; it's your duty to sit down and watch it, many

times.



Weird, worrying, unexpected - but also oddly charming. It makes an

indifferent little car attractive to a young market. It's a haunting,

clever piece of work. And comparing it with a tough little baby is not

the most revolutionary of ideas. But it's the way they tell it.



And brilliant execution is the key to why the Social Work campaign is so

startlingly different. To explain why society's misfits behave the way

they do and what social workers can do about it, through the medium of a

strip cartoon, could seem to be the final evidence that we're all now so

dumbed down that even the most serious of messages have to be trivially

put.



But there is concern and sympathy radiating off these pages in a far

more understanding and persuasive way than any number of the weight-ier,

thunderous approaches to public service advertising we've all seen

before. And, hopefully, with these two campaigns, not just the

Volkswagen and COI Communications clients but also the agency people

will get the effect they deserve.



Perhaps a couple of golds?



FERRERO ROCHER

Project: Ferrero Rocher

Client: Neil McIntosh, marketing director

Brief: Give them Ferrero Rocher and make them feel special. But can you

bring yourself to do it?

Agency: Banks Hoggins O'Shea/FCB

Writer: Graham Pugh

Art director: Chris Walker

Typographer: Martin Crockatt

Photographer: Sara Morris

Exposure: Six-sheet posters

BATCHELORS

Project: Cup A Soup

Client: Richard Kingsbury, senior brand manager

Brief: Modernise and create a greater awareness for Cup A Soup

Agency: Mother

Writer: Mother

Art director: Mother

Director: Traktor

Production company: Partizan Exposure: National TV

VOLKSWAGEN

Project: Lupo

Client: Catherine Woolfe , communications manager

Brief: Make people think of Lupo as solid as an extremely small rock

Agency: BMP DDB

Writer: Jeremy Craigen

Art director: Joanna Wenley

Director: Fredrik Bond

Production company: Harry Nash

Exposure: National TV

GUINNESS UDV

Project: Archers Schnapps

Client: Phillip Gladman, global brand director

Brief: Maintain the momentum behind the successful relaunch of Archers

Schnapps

Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi

Writers: Joel Bradley and Rupert Jordan

Art directors: Phil Clarke and Stuart Mills

Director: Anthea Benton

Production company: Partizan

Exposure: National TV

COI COMMUNICATIONS

Project: Social work recruitment

Client: Fiona Samson, campaign team leader

Brief: Recruit social workers

Agency: D'Arcy

Writer: Justin Hooper

Art director: Christian Cotterill

Illustrator: David McKean

Typographers: Christian Cotterill and Steve Darsow

Exposure: National press

EMAP

Project: Magic TV

Client: Melanie Whitehead, brand manager

Brief: Launch Magic TV station

Agency: Mother

Writer: Mother

Art director: Mother

Director: Trevor Melvin

Production company: Paul Weiland Film Company

Exposure: Digital and satellite TV