In this new ad from Levi's, Charles Bukowski's words are the narrative to what looks like - in light of recent events in the UK - The London riots. So yes, go forth, and loot? Bad timing, really.

They started all this long before the London riots though, we posted the Go Forth Murals here, as they celebrate modern day pioneers. That's the idea of the campaign. Not riots. Rioteers aren't pioneers. Hey I rhymed, do I get a cookie?

Ad agency: Weiden + Kennedy
Creative Directors Tyler Whisnand / Jeff Williams / Eric Baldwin
Writer Charles Bukowski, “The Laughing Heart”
Copywriter Antony Goldstein
Art Director Julia Blackburn / Jeff Williams
Producer Sarah Shapiro
Account Team Andrew Schafer / Haley Mazza / Katie Nance
Executive Creative Directors Mark Fitzloff / Susan Hoffman
Agency Executive Producer Ben Grylewicz

Production Company
Director Ralf Schmerberg
Executive Producer Donna Portaro
Line Producer Munir Abbar
Director of Photography Daniel Gottschalk

Editorial Company Joint
Editor Tommy Harden
Post Producer Ryan Shanholtzer
Post Executive Producer Patty Brebner

VFX Company Method Studios
VFX Executive Producer Robert Owens
Flame Artist Claus Hansen
VFX Producer Ananda Reavis
Titles/Graphics W+K Studio

Music + Sound Company Search Party
Composer Julianna Barwick
Sound Designer Tommy Harden
Song (if applicable) “Anjos”

Mix Company Eleven
Mixer Jeff Payne


Comments (5)

  • AnonymousCoward's picture
    AnonymousCoward (not verified)

    Ahhh... Levi's. If i would have to choose my favorite classic American clothing made in China, Levi's would be it.

    Aug 13, 2011
  • AnonymousCoward's picture
    AnonymousCoward (not verified)

    I don't think it was bad timing, I just think they should have cut that V/O out. When images that nice take center stage, let the visuals do the talking. In a poll I've conducted, the #1 complaint I get from consumers is V/O's in commercials. When I cut a commercial with V/O I do it with and without, if the words aren't instrumental to the brand they shouldn't be there.

    I found the whoring of Charles Bukowski's words to sell jeans distasteful, however solemn the intention and I think it's completely out of rhythm with the demographic who it's targeted to. It feels like the personal taste of the creative director, rather than Levi's you know. Stop trying to change the world. You're selling jeans beneath all the poetry.

    Less is more, we know who Levi's is, only Apple can get away with using geniuses to sell their products.

    The ad is nice. *** sound design and direction are tops.

    Aug 25, 2011
  • Dabitch's picture

    I have to agree with you, and the poll you conducted, about voiceovers. I've seen many ads ruined by a perfectly superflous VO. They can really ruin the mood when they write the message on the viewers nose.

    Aug 25, 2011
  • AnonymousCoward's picture
    AnonymousCoward (not verified)

    Yes. Bring them home.

    Sep 05, 2011
  • AnonymousCoward's picture
    AnonymousCoward (not verified)

    I received a far more layered message, and in it, the public protests (notice how renaming them, puts the power back in the people's hands...) are appropriate. They did not actually show any violence, but gathering strength in numbers, that can be - even to the Millions - a Peace Full Sharing that "This is important to us".

    The emotional message I received/responded was one of Hope. Hope about the young people waking up and realizing that this time, our time, looks quite like other times when tyrants and oppressors, so often the rich and powerful, gradually took away our rights and our ability to feed and protect our families. Hopeful of young people saying that this is our time, and rising up, spreading out, saying: We Want This Instead! Just choose VERY carefully what it is you want...

    Keep it up, Levi's/Weiden + Kennedy. You could indeed fuel a new movement.

    Oh, wait, are they owned by the Chinese Government? In which case, test every box for chemicals which. by greed or by designed could make our kids ill, weak, unfocused, and unable to stand up for themselves/us...

    Sep 05, 2011

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about the author

Dabitch Creative Director, CEO, hell-raising sweetheart and editor of Adland. Globetrotting Swede who has lived and worked in New York, London, San Francisco, Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Stockholm after growing up in Kiruna, Raleigh and Jiddah.