• Michael Weinberg

Michael's Favorite 72nd Emmy Awards Ads

Updated: Mar 2, 2021

Like most things in 2020, the 72nd Emmy Awards was a novel experience. And even though the award show was hosted entertainingly and produced well (considering a lack of a live audience), people at home didn’t seem to want to show up either. The Emmy Awards had to suffer through the competition of an NBA playoff game and Saturday Night Football for ratings this year. It also had to deal with COVID, forcing host Jimmy Kimmel to be a lone actor on stage and all the nominees to experience the joy of winning (or the disappointment of losing) from their bedrooms.

But as Creative Director of an advertising agency like SparkIt Creative, I was interested not in Jimmy Kimmel disinfecting an envelope with fire, but in the commercials. Here were some of my favorites and why.

LG CordZero: Bless This Mess

I liked this commercial because of how it made a normally boring chore (vacuuming) seem like a genuinely fun activity. I think the major strategy that LG employed in this ad was the product itself. Most vacuum cleaners I’ve known in my life did the job but were uncomfortably large and had to be plugged in. The fact that this CordZero product (whose name suggests its benefit) offers a more comfortable experience is engaging on its own. The song “I Love It” by Icona Pop has the lyrics “I don’t care, I love it,” which I think perfectly pairs with visuals of messy dog food bowls and spilled popcorn. Overall, crisp footage, a pop song, and people having a good time using a futuristic product make for a commercial worth paying attention to.

Allstate: Roll Up

This ad (which I had seen before the award show) caught my eye for the same reason I think it’s intended to: What’s going on? A calming song by Bill Withers (who passed away earlier this year) attracts the ears while the eyes are lured by a strange visual of a woman rolling through town wrapped in different fabrics. The commercial was long – one minute – but it was executed well enough to keep the viewer’s attention until the end. That’s when the rich, familiar voice of Dennis Haysbert lets you know this is an insurance commercial – and that woman was definitely protected. Overall, I thought this was a clever attention-grabber with a novel representation of insurance.

Kia Turbocharged K5: Turning The Lights On

I thought this commercial was a smart and original way to say two things: the Kia Turbocharged K5 will make you feel young and it is full of power. The ad shows the sedan zooming through a carnival that appears to be out of use. As the car passes the carnival rides and machines, they light up and are full of energy. The narrator ensures us that “rides made us feel something once” and “they can do it again.” With that one line, the commercial has done away with the notion that driving is a boring activity. The dark, mysterious footage and electricity buzzing in the background contributes to the appeal for a target audience of possibly middle-aged drivers. Overall, Kia’s commercial does a good job of producing an original way to say the old “this car will make you feel young again” appeal.

Xfinity Mobile: My World

Maybe it’s the Gen Z in me that likes to see young, artsy characters in commercials, but I think this Xfinity Mobile commercial is done very well. The footage shows different scenes of actors participating in their own hobbies, many of them very interesting with breathtaking shots. The song, an even more serene cover of “Go Your Own Way” by Fleetwood Mac, was chosen well, as the commercial advertises the flexibility of the data plans for every customer (each went their own way, get it?). Overall, this commercial was pleasing to the eyes and ears despite a somewhat boring product, much like the Allstate commercial.

Coors Light: What a Beautiful Day

This commercial was by far my favorite. With a whimsical, Disney-like song describing a less-than-perfect morning as “beautiful,” the commercial gives hints to the reality of this poor sweatpants-wearing man with a Coors Light. Despite the Snow White animals harmonizing with this man, we see that he is actually wearing a casual-on-bottom and professional-on-top outfit. We also see that the newspaper quickly flashes a headline: “2020… SERIOUSLY?” This song clearly is not real life. And sure enough, at the climax of the song, across a gorgeous mountain that looks familiar, the scene changes abruptly to the man glumly on a video call. This commercial is advertising not just Coors Light beer, but a chance to win a trip to “the background you’ve been staring at for months.” Clever, funny, relevant, and honest describe why this is my favorite ad of the 72nd Emmy Awards.

If you liked this post, check out my other posts on my favorite commercials in the ad campaigns category.

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