Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Ad Eaters

I went to see "The Night of the Adeaters" last night, which is an annual touring showcase of some of the best (or funniest) advertising from around the world. It was held for 2 nights at Shaab Park cinema, which I had never been to before.

The crowd in attendance was mostly young, and hip, what I like to think of as Kuwait's "creative community", i.e. the majority worked in marketing or advertising... or maybe planned to do so or even wished they were! They were pretty rowdy too which added to the fun.

The evening kicked off with a "live performance" by Gubgub, the MTC-Vodafone mascot from the TV ads (MTCeeeeeeee Vodafooooone!!), who then proceeded to embarrass everyone by sucking up to the American MC, whoever he was (Americaaan, mariiine, very goooood!!).

After that, the commercials started rolling and it was one hilarious ad after the other. There were too many funny ones to list here, but standouts included ads for Luminou, a French glow-in-the-dark teddy bear (dans le noir, on peu le voir), and a few car and deodorant ads from South America, plus sore throat medication ads from the UK..... Other commercials were genuinely moving, such as ads for the blind and others against domestic violence. The Microsoft ad was beautifully executed but was too damn long. There was an entry from Kuwait for Soug Al-Mubarakiya which was beautifully shot, and a few from Lebanon as well. A few ads from African countries like Senegal and Burkina Faso were so primitive, that I wondered if they were included to laugh AT them or with them. I felt uncomfortable.... I also expected to see the hysterical 15-second Mid-Eastern Snickers ads that always air during football matches. I love those!

One thing I noticed, was that whenever an ad came on with any type of music (hip-hop, techno, Arabic etc.), the crowd would clap along wildly. You could tell they were just itching to dance or just enjoy some live, loud music every once in a while. Why the Forces of Darkness equate live music with sin and depravity is beyond me... والشرهة على اللي يحسب حسابهم

All in all.. it was an enjoyable evening although it dragged a bit too long. Good thing they had food during the break, courtesy of Domino's Pizza (yum!) otherwise I would've been very unhappy.


  1. Z,
    Im dot in the universe, my question is, how would i know if events like this are taking place?
    That sounds really exciting, and def something I would have loved to see...


  2. zaydoun, i went to last year's show, and was very disappointed. Im obsessed with advertising, ive always been into it, but last year the show started an hour and a half late, and we left the theater at 2, while the show continued till 4 I think!! That was just a turnoff and none of my friends even considered going again.

  3. Waterlillie... the eventy was advertised in the papers

    Q... Last night started at 8 and finished by 11, so it was alright.

  4. I remember once on Israel T.V I saw what seems like an Oscar awards but for advertisements. The ads were hilarious, funny and really creative. They had various categories; sport adds, funniest ads, most sexy add (mostly lingerie & women underwear related stuff). It was fun watching, & I wonder why we don't have such creative adds here in Kuwait!
    Some of the old creative ones I do remember are; Samsung (jasoom eh da ya jasoom), Tikka (I like it spicy... Tikka), Pizza I6alia (The guy wearing a chraimba running in the streets for his pizza) :)

  5. boghazi, what about the grandaddy of all Kuwaiti ads????

    NBK's "hala hala zeina"

    I cant forget this one time I was watching a football game at the stadium, it was a final, in the mid-90's, and during half time they had that ad on the screen with the music. almost EVERYBODY was clapping (sharbika) 3ala the tune and singing with it!

    Thats how successful the ad was!

  6. Q, ya I forgot about that!
    Ok do you remember Like-Cola? It was a big hit when Coca-Cola was not available in Kuwait. They had an ad which I used to watch in every video I bought/rented from "Al-Wissam" video store!
    A guy wearing red t-shirt playing soccer, & he would play a perfect double-kick & scores a goal. during all his movements you'd hear the narrator saying in a creepy yet tempting voice "Laaaaaaaike..... CooooLaaaaaa" :P

  7. LOL bughazi!! How about

    1- the Crush (remember the other version of miranda) ad, where the swimmers would be waiting for the mark to start, and this young boy tempts the swimmer "khuldlak shaf'ai", and the swimmer hesitates at first then tries it and forgets all about the race? LOL!

    2- The sa3eeedy 3umda look a like saying "Ana 3aaawiz shaaaaaay"! then a sa3eedy dancer saynig "ilshay ilshay bit'olly hateely ilshaay, mosh ay shay, yib'a aih?" The chorus "shay il wazza, da akhir tamam mush ay kalam!"

    aaah, the golden age of Kuwaiti ads!

  8. Guys guys you wanna talk about classic yet twisted..remember "Abanderado" where little kids dancing in their underwears!!
    gosh how did they had that commercial on!!

  9. Q, those sure were the golden years... but for now... say TCHEEEEEEEZ :-p~~

    JB, How can we forget about that! "Abandirado.... heeeeeey, ilisbaaaniya... heeeey"

  10. JB!!! sa7 sa7 how can i forget?!

    "Abandirado, hooooya, ilespaniya, hoooya...."

    The freaky part was that they had old men dancing with kids in their underwear!! LOOOOOOOOOOL!!

  11. HOLD ON, HOLD ON..... was it "heeeeey" or "hooooya"?

  12. bo_ghazi it's hooyaaaaa
    and Q yeah I remember the old was creepy LOL

  13. I think it was:
    "Shoofo el-7elween,
    Shoofo eeh labseen,
    ... etc.

    Speaking of old TV commercials, anyone remembers: "Hala Hala Sharp"? Or the Lebanese guys smoking Sheesha (NEC)? Or those testimonials for Tide (the mother who cleaned up her boys Dishdashah ? and his birthday party was saved, but without a cake!)?

    I recall this fella: Nadim Sawalha, who used to appear in many commercials ? the ones I remember were for a Bank (Al-Khaleej, maybe?).

  14. Interesting topic and comments ..I love ads , and always appreciate those creative ppl who work on them specially when the theme is new and funny ..

  15. Ooops, how about:
    "yel3abo, yel3abo be_shams eb yel3aboo,
    la3bo shwayeh we ta3bo ma3adoo eb yel3abo!
    Jaboo Tang ..."

    Or is it too old !!

  16. i didnt go this year because i was disappointed last year :S

    anyways, people who watched it in lebanon this year told me it was 4 hours long, but people who watched in here in kuwait the past few days tell me it was 3 hours long. you think they actually removed an hour of ads?

    You're right though, 3 hours or 4 hours are too long.

    I agree with u on the souk mubarikiya ad. I watched it during Ramadan and think it was filmed really nice. A film camera was used for it and the crew is Indian and were directed by P&A.

  17. another ad i remmber
    the samsung ad

    jasum , eda ya jasum
    telvizyon samsung ya sabeeka

    and so on

    damn the old memory ,i have some old taped shows on KTV , i may covert some of them to avi :)

  18. forza, if u do that, please send them to me! Read my post to get an idea of why....

  19. There was a time when humor was only limited to consumer ads, and Kuwaiti banks frowned on any comedy because "they were a respectable bank"... I think they're loosening up now. Not enough though

  20. Guys
    Do you remember Beneton stereo system ad
    A guy who was dressed to look like Antar ben shadad
    That says to the prince [Zuhair probably]

    Hatha jameel men beni helal
    Hatha shayboob men beni dadada
    Hatha stereo hi-fi men Beneton

    [then everyone sing]

    Beni beni beneton Baaanetooon
    Men beni 3antar

  21. Esetch,

    Yes, I remember that one and there was a "copycat" version: 3antar arrives to claim 3ablah, armed with Sharp Color TV (instead of 100 camels as in the original story):
    "Ana 3antar, bu?l fawares, Sharp TV for 3eyoon 3ablah, ? blah blah, blaah";
    "Wa7eshni ya 3antar,
    Waheshni ya Sharp!?

    Another one of those "3antar" inspired commercials was for milk ("Carnation"?). A hooded 3antar-like black knight arrives, and "3ablah" hurries up to prepare the tea for him: "wasal 7abibi, 7adharow el-ahwah! El-shay besor3ah ? music starts - 7u6oly Carnation 3ash-shay le 7abibi!"

    God, that one was dead awful!!

    Now, a real oldie: remember those commercials for "Darya" detergent, where they had a raffle and the winner gets a gold coin ? or a car or something? Similar campaigns were made for soft drinks and Tide- VW Beetle was the top prize!

  22. الله يا انتو عتج

    تذكرون بعد دعاية شوكولاتا ويفا؟ ولا دعاية ديكسان "بلا رغوة بلا بلوط

    ولا يابو الشنب اديني الشاي، اديني شاي الفراشة

  23. speaking of old kuwaiti ads... do u guys remember the pizza italia ad from the 80s? i dont know why but its one of the few ads i recall from that time

  24. I had so much fun. had to leave early, but it was stellar. i surprisingly liked te phillipino ad. Keep on keepin' on.

  25. *claps in glee* someone who was actually there! I had a blast too :D Found myself nodding along to most of your post but please, Zaydoun, Luminou??? Luminou???After the 3rd clip I was ready to throw the clappers (how could you not mention them btw?) at the screen. I was expecting a Nike commercial, got them but not the one that always stands out in my mind. I don't know if you've seen it; it involves a streaker at a British football match.

  26. Zaydoun;

    "Baddak troo7 el-ba7ar? Mabaddi, mabaddi!
    Baddak troo7 3as_cinema? Mish raye7, mish raye7!
    6ab shu ra'ayak be-shokolatah Wefa? YAAAY!"


    "Aaal a7san min Dexan - Hahahahahaha!"

    And you say we are "3ettaj"! :-D

    Here are some other extreme oldies I remember:

    There was a commercial for a bank - don't remember which one - where a lady gets to her personal account manager - another lady - who offers her "istikanat" tea, and they used to show the empty "istikanah" in an extreme close-up. (="chai dha7ah el bank?").

    Americana used to have this cake commercial where a secretary eats the cake she was delivering to here boss, anyone racals that one?

    Any recalls the car battery "Warrah" - and the commercial that featured Saleh Hamad (="Embireech")?

    And who can forget:
    "3azeez, 3azeez, el-Watan!
    Wel Watan 3azeez!"

    All this got me into thinking of the greatest TV commercial, EVER!

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