In a previous post I wrote about my longtime reluctance to criticize new ad campaigns. Obviously, that misgiving does not apply when it comes to praising them. If I see something I like I’m delighted to write about it here.

And so I have. And so I will.

For the last couple of weeks I’ve been captivated by the ad campaign promoting the FX network’s upcoming penultimate Simpsons’ marathon, where they will be running every Simpsons episode ever made, all 552 of them, from start to finish. Fittingly, the theme: Every. Simpsons. Ever.

Though all the campaign pieces are funny, without doubt the anthem commercial is the hero. It brilliantly imagines a world decimated by some unspecified apocalypse; each vignette beautifully depicting the ruins. The detail within these tableaus is stunning, as good as any you’ll find in a big budget genre feature. Better than many, actually. In each scene is also a cleverly situated television set and on that TV a classic bit from a Simpsons’ episode is playing. Oblivious to the spreadingdecay, someone (or thing) is watching. The takeaway: while the world may be ending who gives a crap there’s a Simpson’s marathon!

It’s just the kind of humor we have enjoyed from the show itself: biting, dark but somehow always joyful. (I won’t rhapsodize about the Simpsons here. Suffice to say it isn’t the longest running sitcom in television history for sucking.)

As in every Simpsons ever it is the details of this commercial that truly make it spectacular. When Mr. Burns utters, “Release the hounds!” we witness a group of feral dogs running up the street. Upon seeing Lisa’s crooked teeth for the first time her dentist screams “There is no God!” The transpiring Apocalypse backs him up. While Homer insanely yells for his burrito two deer idly graze outside the TV shop. Against a black screen a big yellow super comes up: “WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE.” Homer pops up emitting a prolonged girlish scream.

Hmmmm… awesome-y.

FX knows their target too well. For this is every fanboys’ wet dream of a TV commercial. Dystopia and The Simpsons. I can hear Comic Book Man now: “Best. Spot. Ever.”

Second commercial pretty stellar as well…

Rock on, America!

Happy Fourth of July! Our nation is 234 years old. Shit, that’s hardly anything. But for us it’s everything.

Especially for us in Ad Land, given our industry has such a direct correlation with the freedoms we hold dear. Used to anyway. Remember the old saw about being able to watch all the shows you want for free because of advertising? Now you can watch most of them for free without advertising. Thank you Hulu and You Tube.

Ah well, it was fun while it lasted.

My next post will be a follow-up to my last, where a great many of you commented on Leo Burnett’s brash, new campaign for Allstate. Seems a few of you feel the work, while excellent, is entirely too derivative of another insurance company’s campaign. We’ll look at that as well as explore the idea of ‘no new ideas’ in the Internet age.

Until then, I’m heading north, with a trunk full of quasi-legal fireworks so, in the words of Apu (from the Simpson’s), I can “celebrate the birth of our country by blowing a small portion of it up.”

God bless you and God bless America.

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