Two Ads I Like and One I Don’t – Nelson Quintal

Only two ads? This is going to be impossible,” was my first thought.

But then a couple of ads immediately sprang to mind, followed by a steady slew of the greatest ads ever made, past and present. But I’m sticking with my first two. And they both have one thing in common – time. The priceless commodity we actually sell to people.

The first ad is about how some things are worth waiting for. Elevator? The worst. Guinness? Hell ya.


It came out when I was just starting my career in copywriting, and over time it hasn’t lost any of its ability to do what great ads do – make you feel something. It also makes me wish I could surf. You know the one, but if you haven’t seen it in a while it’s worth another look.

Guinness “Surfer” from Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO and directed by Jonathan Glazer.

The flawless spot – direction, writing, sound design, visual effects, music, VO, editing, acting – is a masterclass of craft, perfecting each individual element that together create one epic Guinness stew.


The second ad is something from my native Canada – Vim’s “Prison” from Zig and directed by The Perlorian Brothers.

And although it was done in 2006, it feels even more relevant now with the Netflix show, Orange Is the New Black, as a cultural backdrop. It’s the benchmark for showing the real benefit when it comes to saving time.

One Ad (Genre) I Don’t Like

For the one ad I dislike, I chose a whole genre of advertising – the pharmaceutical ad. Living in a foreign country, I generally watch US television, and one commercial after another peddles a miracle pill that sounds more like a nightmare.

Here’s just a small list of side-effects from this particular medication:

“Some people have changes in behavior, thinking or mood, hostility, agitation, depressed mood and suicidal thoughts or actions while taking or after stopping CHANTIX.”

They must work. They are on non-stop. Maybe people are comforted by the transparency. If men will risk possible death for an erection, I guess suicidal thoughts are a small price to pay to stop smoking.

These ads are starting to give me anxiety, but I’m sure they have something for that too.

Nelson Quintal

Nelson Quintal

Nelson Quintal is the Global Creative Director at Cheil Worldwide Seoul

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