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Mentos commercials go ultra-violent

Have you met Dragee, the new spokesperson for Mentos? He’s a calm, mellow fellow. Here he is in a YouTube video, hanging out with some martial arts experts in a room full of sharp swords. Look at how self-assured and—OH DEAR GOD!

So far there are 3 online videos starring Dragee, a sort of Zen daredevil, and Rick, his straight man. All end with Dragee meeting a violent demise. There’s one where he is run through with a sword (above), one where he is bitten by deadly snakes, and one where he is mangled in horrific traffic accident (both below). It’s a bitter way to sell sweets.

All three ads are playable on a Mentos YouTube channel; there’s also a Facebook page and Twitter feed. This campaign was created by The Martin Agency, with copywriting by VP/Associate Creative Director Mike Lear.

Reaction to the spots has been positive. All 3 videos have a healthy number of plays, Facebook comments include a lot of laughs, Copyranter likes ’em, and Mashable called Dragee a “new viral star.”

Some commentators compare these dark, twisted Mentos ads to TBWA’s excellent work for Skittles. I think there’s a big difference. Even the most twisted Skittles commercials usually leave a sweet aftertaste. They don’t end in death.

Personally, I don’t like watching a guy get hurt. The Mentos “Traffic” spot seems especially cruel, since it looks like it’s set in the sort of developing city where urban traffic deaths are a real problem.

There was a time not long ago when Mentos commercials didn’t show men in puddles of their own blood. They were weird and happy and absolutely awful, like this:

Those were simpler times. Dragee would have felt right at home.

* * * *

Who’s responsible for these ads?

Agency: The Martin Agency
Group Creative Director: Keith Cartwright
Copywriter: Mike Lear
Art Director: Dustin Artz
Strategic Planner: John Manley
Agency Executive Producer: Brett Alexander
Agency Broadcast Producer: Tania Staykova
Agency Assistant Producer: Marlena Villery
Agency Digital Executive Producer: Lalita Koehler
Agency Digital Producer: Eryn Lovich
Production Company: Radical Media
Director: Rosey
Director of Photography: Tim Pike
Executive Producer: Jim Bouvet
Producer: Barbara Benson
Editorial Company: Running with Scissors
Post Facility: ArtJail
Audio Post Company: Sound Lounge
Sound Design Company: Henry Boy

(Credits via www.funnycommercialsworld.com)

Who signed off on this?

Probably somebody at Perfetti Van Melle USA

— By Daryl Lang. Filed under Advertising, Social Media

One comment

  1. ashley says:

    Mentos ads of the future may need a disclaimer that says, “No man was harmed in the marketing of this mint.”

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