Our blog yesterday on whether Jaguar's 'Good to be Bad' adverts help or hinder the brand has sparked a torrent of debate. It’s worth remembering that our original point was that the F-type coupé - which we’ve tested extensively - has much more breadth and subtlety than the billboard ads seek to imply
However, because of the success of the associated TV spots, the whole thing soon broadened into a debate about the pros and cons of using celebrities in high-quality advertising video productions.
To reprise: this advert was originally made for screening during TV coverage of the American Superbowl, where a 30-second slot costs millions, so no surprise that Jaguar is prepared to invest in the likes of Sir Ben Kingsley, Tom Hiddleston and Mark Strong to carry its message on camera. The effect has been exactly what Jaguar must have wanted. It went viral after screening, and we're still talking about it more than two months after the Superbowl finished.
Some of you agreed with me that Jaguar’s portrayal of its own car is trite: the company doesn’t even try to portray the full extent of the car’s capabilities. But most of you agreed with my colleague Darren Moss’s assessment that the campaign plays on an ideal that especially suits Jaguar’s current purpose: that being seen as rebellious sweeps away the pipe-and-slippers image Jaguar has been fighting for years. Makes sense, even to me…
One surprising outcome of all this is how many of you have taken the trouble to suggest follow-up adverts to the original. Becoming an advertising “creative” obviously has powerful appeal to Autocar’s website visitors. Here’s a typical offering, presented by an author we sadly can’t credit, which has the budget-boosting virtue of needing the services of only one of Jaguar’s pricey trio of actors…
Picture an English gentleman (Hiddleston), the sort of bloke men want to be and women want to be with. He's fashionable in an elegant, timeless sort of way but has a slightly dangerous, unpredictable aura. He’s in an underground car park, with three sports cars parked next to one another. He saunters past a Porsche 911, looking straight ahead, then a Mercedes SLK (with a wry look to the camera) before arriving beside an F-type coupé. He presses the key fob to unlock the car, turns to the camera and delivers the production’s only line: "Well, which would you expect me to choose?"
Could you do better? Send us your suggestions for the next "Good to be Bad" advert, and if we think they’re good we’ll write about them.
Additional reporting by Darren Moss