Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Flavor of Roast

Yes, I indeed watched the Roast of Flava Flav last night.

Greg Giraldo killed it.
(Hurry up and watch before Comedy Central snags it back.)

Anyway, I have to say I really enjoyed it. I also have to wonder if media planners could account for the fact that this same dude (and potential target) was going to watch the U.S. Open but in looking for USA channel went through programming lists and saw this and decided to just assume that Roddick would win.

Some random observations:
-Roasting of Flav = Roasting of everyone on Stage. While it is standard proceedure to stick it to everyone in the spotlight, the roasters spent very little time on Flava Flav. I was wondering if it's because they didn't know him that well (enought to make jokes or predict his reactions) or didn't think he deserved to really be roasted.
-Though there is certainly a bit of Roasted by association. Every Brigitte Nielsen zinger was an "oh, snap!" moment where you'd divert your attention and embarrassment to Flav. Problem was, then you were embarrassed for him and a bit grossed out in general and then looked at Carrot Top, who just confused you and so you'd find safe haven in Patton Oswalt but would try and remember his name and get embarrassed and annoyed, so would look to Ice Tea who frightened you a bit,
-Also got me thinking about who is the best type of person to roast? Past roastees include Pam Anderson, Denis Leary, and Jeff Foxworthy. This one was my favorite because of the random assembly of comics, the inability to identify with Flav in any way, and also how he became an empathetic character but you never felt so sorry for him that the jokes crossed the line (the way you did with Denis Leary who, while he's a comedian so should be more able to take it, has real problems).
-That made me think about how "It's funny because it's true" is a weird statement. So is it's sad because it's true.
-Regardless of what you think of him, you cannot deny that Flav has a great sense of humor. Or at the very least likes to laugh.
-And finally, execution matters as much as or more than strategy. While many of the Comedian-roasters chose the same key areas to make their jokes—Flav's darkness and nastiness, Lisa L.'s love of black men, Jimmy Kimmel's luck, Kat Williams' height, Carrot Top's lack of talent, Brigitte N.'s amazonian manliness, Snoop's love of the sticky-icky, and Ice Tea's age, etc.—only some connected. This was based on creativity and timing (not just comic, but when you went in order of comedians). That said, I was impressed how many ways they could insult Brigette's manliness but the seemed to have difficulties finding new, funny ways to joke about Snoop's smoking habit. All in all, if you like the clip above, you may want to peep the rest on repeat.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

A Note About Transparency

Back at Fallon, I wrote a post about how my understanding of Pharrell's authenticity was called into question.

I concluded with the point that though I'd started replacing "Authentic" with "Transparent" (when it came to how a company should behave), it was less of a choice and more of an imperative.

A few weeks ago I was reminded of this fact—that you can't hide the truth—when I read this story about one of my favorite shows, Man Vs. Wild. Long story short, Bear Grylls, who had become a relative hero to me and my crew by surviving/making his way out of isolated/ treacherous environments/situations (lots of slash-ies like Fabio), was discovered to be staying at hotels, getting help and consultation, etc. Basically, he was not doing what the show claimed he was.

You can get a sense from this video which I stumbled upon this weekend (forgot where).
There's no denying Bear's still a badass, but I have not watched an episode since. He lost my trust and even though the show promises to be "completely 100% transparent" from now on (and to go back and edit past episodes based on the truth), I will be turning my attention to (or DVR to record) Survivorman or Iron Chef or some other show like The Hills, which hasn't lost my trust. Strangely, this happening has not negatively affected my view(ership) of the Discovery Channel.

But either way, remember: In this transparent world, you may only get one shot at honesty.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Inbox of Immaturity

Sorry so late and limited. It's been a long week with new biz, and it's far from over. I guess I'm posting for my own procrastination as much as anyone's today.

The video: here
The news story: here
The site: here

Now that I've done a little YMCA, got drunk, went to the Bronx Zoo, made it back, and caught up on some tasty TV show reviews, back to work.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Why I Love Facebook #4

Because when I checked my notifications today, I got this ego boost.

"Unsubscribe from these notifications" - yeah right. Unfortunately I'm not a lady or I'd be waiting in line to Show My Moves to J. Lo right now. And not to brag, but I'll be at her show tonight. So there.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Be With You, Hoo, Boooo!

In case you weren't watching NBC's Today Show this morning, I've got the watercooler talk right here. Matt Lauer serving up that anticipation. Ann Curry giving up that support in the form of a half-smirk, half-frown to the losers. Today Show throws a Martha Stewart wedding!

And the winner, believe it or not, were the Singing Bandits. Not to be confused with Wet or Sticky Bandits. The beat out Tim, I mean Tommy Duncan and his Be-ance by the narrowest margin in Today-Show-throws-a-Wedding-history by 500 votes!

Go here and click on "Song and Dance! Wedding couples perform" to watch the final four talent competition. (No, NBC doesn't understand the concept of letting people easily share their content.) Please wait until the end for Cody's suspect musicial performance and Jessica's talent of nodding, smiling, and lip synching the words being sung to her.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Inbox of Immaturity

Back from Likemind this morn, I feel energized to get the IOI back in gear after missing last week.

It's been a minute since I hit up this site for an image, so wanted to give some love.

Over one week later, peeps are still talking about Daft Punk, so I thought I'd hit you all off with the full version (it's an MP3 file to download) of the Keyspan Park show and one of DP in Wisconsin in '96 sent over to me by Jimmy, who reports for Maxim and Blender.

Crazy Bruce's Liquors has got nothing on Flea Market man - remember it's just like a mini-mall. Nor can he compete with Crazy Eddie - the electronics store where the prices aren't the only thing that's insane.

The Japanese have a great video for potty training. We can also thank Tokyo (and Aki) for this Storm Trooper boogie.

Tracking studies are usually not this fun. Thrillist hit me off. Otherwise, you may want to go searching for the ladies - we know know these two were invited.

And finally, Tay Zonday is back and will apparently be opening for Girl Talk in Minneapolis on my bday (Oct. 5). Make sure you peep the John Mayer Remix he did for Best Week Ever and the Matt Damon nonsense with Jimmy Kimmel is quite funny as well.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Facebook as a (Traditional) Advertising Platform

Caught this on Facebook's News Feed today. Have to say that this type of advertising works pretty seamlessly into the site's design. So much better than banners, skyscrapers, even videos and other dynamic online advertising. Plus it's nice to know that companies are not just creating groups but linking to content that the audience will find entertaining and possibly useful. Showtime could have easily had sent me to their Group page and asked me to be a friend - and maybe I would have because I was feeling in an open, friendly mood or wanted to have 10 groups rather than 9 to round it out or some other equally unworthy reason.

Not just that, I like that they're linking to 4 different places, which I'm assuming they'll optimize based on metrics. (Made me think of Google's ability to test different "faces"/starting screen images for the same video to see which were most effective in getting clicks, which I think is a great offering.)

So although I don't subscribe to Showtime, I couldn't help but click on those pretty little boxes to learn more. And I'm glad I did because Addicted to Weeds took me to this video (below) featuring my favorite dude, Jay, from 40 Year Old Virgin...who I guess is also on this show, which I'm one step closer to watching. Now that I think of it, Showtime probably knows that one show alone will not get most people to subscribe to the channel, so offering a link to Californication, Dexter, or Brotherhood is not just nice diversity or hedging their bet, but a crucial decision to make us tip. (Of course, the don't expect one video strip to move me from no awareness of the shows to subscription, but recently hearing that Michael C. Hall is tearing up the screen on Dexter from a friend may have done the trick. Plus, Double D on Cali. 3 shows - that's more than my 2 on HBO. Sold!)

Showtime have done well - Facebook seems like a pretty smart forum to highlight its show and its cleverly-named, Homegrown Humor Video Contest.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Vitamin Water, Packaging, Coincidence

Here's a post I never would have made had it not been a coincidence.

Well, those who know me like Top Friend on Facebook well probably know that I'm all but addicted to Vitamin Water. I got hooked—I suspect but unconfirmed like many other Gen GuYs (see left-side for description) have—hearing in college that Revive (fruit punch flavor in the purple bottle - think the fact that there's at least 3 ways to talk about the product and probably 4 if you include leading ingredient) was great for curing hangovers. One successful trial later I was hooked. Then I started trying other flavors convinced that getting my daily reqs of vitamins so easily was a godsend. (Beer + Wingos didn't feel like my source of vitamins A-C.) I liked the way I felt afterwards - never too full. And gradually I started to truly prefer the taste, replacing more sugary OJ and Gatorade, which had occupied close to 75% of my fluid intake other than water. So for about 6 years or so now I've been as I said a real fan.

Today on my way up to a client meeting I grabbed a Multi-V (still my V-dub of choice). In the car I drank and chatted just like every other time. I glanced at the Nutritional Facts like I always do to reconfirm I'm making such an intelligent beverage choice. And I turned past the witty paragraph story about the Jetsons and the pill that's a 3-course meal...and wait, I'm actually not satisfied. Seriously, 6 years of being content reading the same nonsense and today I got a bit frustrated that Vitamin Water has not updated its package. Not frustrated enough to remember when I got back to the office...

But then I went over to my friend Leland's blog to see if he'd written anything about last week's conference. And to my surprise saw this post. This is probably the post I would have liked to write, but may have just ended with something like this: Is it time for Vitamin Water to change its packaging?

I have used Vitamin Water as a clear example of a brand that understands the value of its package as its most important form of communication. Now I wonder if they just got lucky. I wonder if they are scared of change because of its success. I wonder if by the time people have consumed so many that the package starts to annoy them, they are so loyal to the taste and the behavior of getting their daily vitamin intake each day through this source that they wouldn't change - I don't think I'm going to wipe Essential out of my life tomorrow. OJ was still found guilty. But still I'm ready for some new entertainment - and hey, I don't remember the last time I talked about VW (recommended a flavor or had a conversation about the brand other than the "It's bullshit" comment from a med school friend every so often). I think getting a more positive pass along going would be worthwhile - and new stories would be an easy way to do it. And I'm not talking about David Wright and Kelly Clarkson stories. Weird me out. Please!

So read about people's new expectations for brands and communication, packaging in particular, there. And tell me what you think - Should Vitamin Water change the stories? Any other part?

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Back From The Whale's...

Surprisingly I did not have any desire to bust out those lines these past few days at the AAAA Planning Conference in San Diego. What I have been doing is catching up with old friends and meeting virtual friends, people I read and respect, and some other mofos without blogs.

Highlights other than taking home a silver Jay Chiat award for Bahamavention (well, not quite home since Fallon took the actual hardware) include:

Speeches by Eric Ryan, Method and Sir Kens A Lot (can you mess with a knight's name like that? oops - Ken Robinson
Breakout sessions led by Scott Lukas of Dosage and Mark Earls (linked above) of Herd Consulting and book
Dinners with peeps at our LA office

I've been blogging in a private space for Deutsch (yes, we're a little late to the conversation, but taking the right step in testing out/getting comfortable before jumping in), so will transfer some of my posts from there and I twittered (twitter link) Day 2.

As a tease to more comprehensive and detailed posting, I kick it off with the same video that opened the conference on Creating Possibilities. After watching, is there any question that we are emotional beings first?

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Why I Love Facebook #3

Yes same person once again. And just to be clear, you read from the bottom up. The packing happened first, but clearly not long before the wedding. :) Is Facebook the next Vegas? It's certainly cheaper. Someone get on that virtual chapel app. (Don't forget Elvis.)

Friday, August 03, 2007

Inbox of Immaturity

Forget the Boston vs. DC debate, it's East Coast-West Coast once again. One of the most viral videos of 2006 has met its match. The West Side's Boyz In The Hills come with the official response to New England P-Unit's Tea Partay.

It's the Green Tea Partay, where you can't make him take off his white puca shell necklace.

In other immaturity, we have animals: Cats and a Lamb

And here comes the part when I reveal something and regret it immediately after - I kind of miss Lambchop's Play-Along. That show was pretty awesome - from the song that never ends to a puppet named Charlie Horse (which rivals Growing Pains's character Boner) Shari Lewis brought us some solid entertainment. You know what I'm talking about. Right?

F that. Immaturity's over. Peep this video from 50 and JT. What.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

The Age Old Question

Nope, not that one. Rather:
Vote at Gawker here

I'm choosing Boston because at least when I go out to bars in DC I don't feel like I'm always a phrase or comment away from getting my ass kicked. A guy named Liam used to live in DC and the Dockers there are laughable. Dios, mio. Liam and me are gonna f*ck you up.

Word of the Week: Christmafy

pronounced christ-mahf-eye

def. To add touches of the Christian holiday to something. Oft-used commercial representations include elves, reindeer, sleighs, poinsettia, snowman, mistletoe and other figures and decorations.

"Let's Christmafy this print ad and put a Santa hat on the guy's head!"

And that's okay for some brands...