On May 1st, Crispin tipped off the NYTimes to a new campaign they were getting ready to launch for Miller Lite. The ads star Burt Reynolds, Jerome Bettis, Eddie Griffin, Triple H, Aron Ralston, Brian Binnie, and Ty Murray sitting around a square table talking about Man Laws. In the teaser spot, the concept is described as "a glimps into the ancient order of men cloaked in secrecy for over 900 years," somewhat like the Order of the Serpentine work they did for Axe. In the ads that broke Monday, the guys sit around talking about things like how long before you can date your buddy's ex, is it ok to stick a finger in a beer to bring them over to friends and if you bring Miller Lite to a party can you take home the leftovers.
The "Man Laws" ads are partly inspired by another Miller Lite standard: the tastes great-less filling debate, said Alex Bogusky.
"Beer is so tied in to male culture," Mr. Bogusky said. "And I think the tradition of sort of settling things over a beer and figuring out the world over beer is a strong one. It's one of the nicer aspects of beer, and it's one of the reasons that it's a powerful cultural beverage."
Read on for more and to check out the ads.
The campaign also includes a microsite, ManLaws.com where folks can watch videos, submit their own laws and the like.
What's somewhat interesting about this "Men of the Square Table" is that just weeks before Crispin broke "Manthem / I Am Man" ad for Burger King's Texas Double Whopper. This route had been taken before, as Milwaukee's Best (also a Miller brand) started a campaign last year by Mother NY all about being the brew for real men. Over the past few years, a number of ads such as the ones for Spike TV and a viral for MINI UK have been taking advantage of the metrosexual trend using it as a concept to turn men back into "manly men".
Screenshot from the ManLaws.com site:
Actually, Crispin milked this schtick dry well before the Burger King "Manthem" work. Remember the "Mantropy" campaign for "Maxim" magazine? (Do they even still have that account?) They mounted a drive to save the men of America from the encroaching weenieness of modern life, even going to far as to submit a petition to the U.S. Department of the Interior to declare manhood an endangered species.
First the spate of "faux porn" executions last year, now this. I know Crispin is brilliant and all, but why do they get a free pass on such unoriginal thinking? Is plagarism any less odious if you steal from yourself? Any other agency would've been raked over the coals for this kind of thing. But God knows you will hear nary a peep of criticism of Crispin in the inevitable gushing write up in "Creativity."
Ah yes that Maxim thing. Thanks Mr. McClure!
See I knew there was more...must have blocked that one out for some reason. ;) The website for the Endangered Man campaign for Maxim is here.
Superadgrunts, check out the Maxim spots:
The frat boy approach was cute for a while, but it's getting old really quickly. The man-power locomotive "those wacky ad guys" keep stokin' is so blatantly formulaic. I know that those guys are capable of much more intelligent work
There is only one "ManLaw"
Real men drink real beer... Not Nuns piss.
Miller Lite - Bud Light - Silver Bullets...
Doesn't anyone know that these are really awful beers to begin with... Bud, Miller, Coors, etc, that the brewer then adds water to? They use these in British pubs to wash the urinals with, then they re-bottle them and ship them to the US.
CP+B is well on the way to proving Jay's imortal words... "I want to see how big we can get before we get bad!"
Bring back the lesbians wrestling in wet concrete, that's a fucking ManLaw spot... I'll wait for the screams on AdScam!!!