The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

Nurofen Gives Me A Headache …
July 31, 2007, 7:25 am
Filed under: Crap Campaigns In History

Yuppie Baz

Alot of people think individuals who talk about ‘high production values’ are the sorts of tossers who only drink red wine, wear black turtlenecks, watch independent movies and dine on alfalfa sprouts or mung beans.

They think these people are arrogant, condescending and out-of-touch with what the general public needs … wants … appreciates.

Alot of clients also seem to think ‘production value’ translates to ‘agency making more money’ and are becoming more and more miserly with their budgets … whilst simultaneously being more and more demanding in their expectations.

Now while I’ve met some individuals who suit those character-assassination attributes … and there’s been more than one agency that has raped a client interms of production costs … the reality is that how communication ‘looks’ can have an incredible impact on how well it resonates with society.

Don’t get me wrong … I’m not advocating style over substance … nor am I saying clients should continually give in to spiralling production costs … and I am certainly not equating ‘high production value’ with cliché-driven ‘status’ communication … I am just saying that if you don’t appreciate the importance of ‘visual treatment’, you can end up with something like this …


For those who don’t know what it is … it’s supposed to be a ‘take’ on the Catherine Zeta-Jones / Sean Connery movie ‘ENTRAPMENT’ [which came out in 1999] … except they’ve used a fat chick with a J-Lo arse and the most convoluted ‘back pain’ shot ever. It makes Nurofen look like a cheaper-than-cheap ‘own-brand’ and demonstrates …

1 The client had a small budget

2 The client was told/felt it this ‘idea’ [used VERY loosely] only required a small budget

3 The agency didn’t realise this was a shit execution

4 The creatives forgot the importance of production value – so if the idea needs money to make it ‘work’ [and the client hasn’t got it] … it’s better to think of a new concept or try and increase the clients budget [which this idea obviously DOESN’T DESERVE] than to go ahead and produce this sort of monstrosity.

However, as Nurofen seem happy to produce god-awful, lowest-common-denominator-of-imagination work, I’ve come up with my own executions which I am more than happy for them to use for a fee – and I can be dammed sure it’ll cost a hell of a lot less than their agency charged them for this bollocks. 

Sort it out Nurofen – your ads shouldn’t give people a headache, unless that is part of some cunning sales strategy! Ha!

Nurofen 1

  Nurofen 2  Nurofen 3

Mind you, whereas these are just some crappy spoofs from my crappy brain – a few years ago we did a rather fun [and controversial] ad for Panadol in India …


[The line say’s “ONE IS ENOUGH”]

Then there was the spot we shot in Oz which showed a queue of people waiting to drink from the Holy Water because they all said it made them feel so good … however when the camera panned upwards, you could see 10 monks dropping Panadol by the bucketload into the stream where the Holy water was taken from. 

Nice idea but got banned, hahaha!

So Nurofen and your agency … the ball is now in your court … up your game or face more shame! [… and that wasn’t supposed to rhyme!]

21 Comments so far
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Comment by lauren

Can I just say Lauren – after reading your comments on the other posts – it’s bloody wonderful to hear you bursting with happiness, excitement and energy. You deserve it and I look forward to seeing and hearing how you and what it leads to – which better be bigger and better commissions because you’re bloody great at what you do and remember, I’ve seen it, so I’m not being all supportive for no reason. Trust me, if you were shit, I’d tell you – maybe not as harshly as Andy – but I’d tell you.

Oh … and if you are saying ‘classy’ to my spoof-ads, then I graciously accept your praise and I’d like it on record that I DIDN’T USE IMPACT ON THE COPY!!!

[You should be all proud – especially Andy and Jill, it’s a big thing for me and FONT ANNONYMOUS seems to be working! Ha]

Comment by Rob

The posh spice ad is great, very funny. There’s a creative position available at our place at the moment, do you want me to put this forward, its very Crispin 🙂

Comment by Pete

Andy is going to kill you. You know how he is with planners doing creative, though I know he’s going to be happy you’ve dumped impact.
Poor impact, it did you no wrong, it gave you love, respect and friendship and just because your “mates” ridiculed you for loving a fat font, you dumped her without so much as a sorry or goodbye. You are a heartless fuck.

Comment by Billy Whizz

And Pete, if you think the work Rob has done is good, then you’re not only cheapening the good creative name of Crispin but you’re making me think my time there was pointless.
Thanks a lot buddy, talk about make me feel shit.

Comment by Billy Whizz

There is an equally shit TVC to go with that “Entrapment” print ad. It’s fucking TERRIBLE!

I agree, Posh spice ad is great.

Comment by Age

Age … if you can find the TVC somewhere / somehow, I’d be very, very grateful – I have a cunning plan I’d like to see if we could get off the ground. Time to name and shame I think, ha!

Comment by Rob

Personally I think the funniest thing in this post is your description of the woman in the god awful Nurofen ad, “fat chick with a J-Lo arse”. Very PC and very accurate.

Comment by George

Does Mary read this blog George?

Comment by fredrik sarnblad

Already on top of it mate, not much luck though. I’ll keep trying!

Comment by Age

Only when I forget to put the password on the screensaver Fred.

Comment by George

Age, you fucking ROCK!

Lets all go and check it out folks …

Comment by Rob

I was convinced that the print ad had been done by Nurofen untill Age came up with the goods.

“We not only wanted to give the product an elite positioning, but we wanted to use humour and suspense for cut-through and engagement. As with our recent Wedding commercial for Nurofen, we believe we have redefined what has up until now been a very predictable category.”

If any of you have ever wondered why I got out of the industry and spend my time with a calculator and smelly ink it’s because of the wank that Nurofen’s agency spouts out about this ad.

It reminds me a little of the Art Market in Frankfurt where you are expected to write lenghty articles explaining what the work is about. Which is of course pointless unless your churn out bollocks – then the written explaination becomes more important (has more value) than the work itself.

In the case of Euro EDC not only is the work wank, but the explanation is wank too. Predictable category? Elite positioning? Humour?



Comment by Marcus

Thank you Marcus for your constructive point of view – frighteningly similar TO WHAT I’VE ALREADY WRITTEN HERE … hahaha!

Comment by Rob

Haven’t got that far yet campbell. Is it any good. Suppose I better have a look and see.

Comment by Marcus

I love how you start from the bottom, up …

Comment by Rob

That is an awful ad.
The typography is shocking.

I like your suggestions though!

Comment by Rob Mortimer

that is some bad adwank happening right there… looking forward to chastising the awful tvc too.

and rob – thanks, thanks, and thanks, you’re a sweetie. i’ll pass on the props to spinach too.

‘classy’ was the whole lot – the venom about the ad, the spoof ads and the panadol ad. and while i’m glad you’ve moved away from impact, keep coming back because you’ve only just emulated the nurofen font, rather than choosing your own, but hey, it’s progress.

Comment by lauren

Of course I emulated the Nurofen ad … isn’t that what a spoof is, to look like the real thing but with an evil twist in the tail?

Pah … the youth of today … 🙂

Comment by Rob

of course! and it’s brilliant! but i wouldn’t go skiting about your sobriety from Impact just yet 🙂

Comment by lauren

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