Landon Donovan Red Carded By Photocopier
The Nike World Cup advertising campaign has the big budget. The MTV World Cup campaign (if you can call it that) has all the weird. But the ESPN Sportscenter campaign seems to have the tone just right. Following on from that clever Jozy Altidore shirt-swap commercial, ESPN aired the above ad starring Landon Donovan during halftime of the USA vs Czech Republic pre-World Cup friendly. It’s Landon Donovan, presumably working in the Sportscenter office, receiving a yellow and then a red card from the photocopier. The first card is clearly for the Beckham vs Simeone in ‘98-esque kick, while the second seems to be for complaining.
As with the Altidore ad, what I like most about this commercial isn’t just that it’s low budget, clever and funny (and reminds me a little of Terry Tate: Office Linebacker) it’s that ESPN doesn’t feel the need to spell out who Donovan is. Which means the ad is aimed squarely at people who are already fans, rather than pandering to the non soccer-savvy audience. If the rest of ESPN’s World Cup coverage is as good as the Sportscenter commercials, it will be like 2006 and Dave “Michael Beckham” O’Brien never even happened.