What’s On

The Axe Effect wears off

In recent months we’ve seen a number of remarkable hellos and goodbyes of advertising icons. Coca-Cola was no longer as happy as it once was with its campaign. So after seven years of prosaic advertising, it said goodbye to the ‘Open happiness’ theme. Coca-Cola will now focus on life’s little pleasures.

The Axe deodorant has now stopped being a chick magnet. The Axe man must dare to believe in himself, without any help from the outside, and definitely not from a can of deodorant. The leading character’s large nose doesn’t stop him from being lucky with the ladies, on the contrary.


If only I’d known that 40 years ago. The members of the goodbye club have a lot in common. They’re giving up advertising fairytales and turning their focus more to real life. And the new Axe man works for the same company as the equally imperfect but not unattractive Dove woman. Unilever’s happy couple.

It’s hard to say goodbye. But we’re fortunately getting familiar and trusted advertising heroes in return.

Michael J Fox is back from the future in a commercial for Toyota. Thanks to Star Wars, Chewbacca is making a comeback in a campaign for Verizon, Walmart and Vans. And last but not least, Dutch fish finger company Iglo is looking for a new captain.

So this all goes to show that we’re wrapping up in the fuzzy warm blankets of old and familiar faces. The only thing that puts a damper on this is that Iglo’s job description says the captain doesn’t necessarily have to have a beard. It seems to me this will cause confusion, particularly among younger viewers. How much change can those little minds take after the transformation of Black Pete into Purple Pete last St. Nicholas Day? Please don’t give our Captain Iglo a modern makeover. He and the Gillette man do work for different companies, right?