Friday, April 22, 2005

Jack Bauer for Calorie Mate

Marketing minds behind the popular Calorie Mate energy bar seem bent on creating a new image for their product as hero food.

In contrast to last summer's low-key TV spots for Calorie Mate (featuring a too-cool-for-school young man and a spoken-word jingle, not nearly angry enough to be called "rap"), more recent ventures have placed the product in the video game Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater (how many times can I mention Metal Gear in this blog?), and now, in TV and print ads starring Kiefer Sutherland.

The ads, inspired by the TV drama 24, doesn't draw any specific connections between Jack Bauer and the "balanced food block." We can guess, however, that Jack Bauer is yelling into his phone, "Give me some Calorie Mate right now! Just do it, Tony!"

This picture is of an ad board in the Ginza subway station. I did a little checking around online and found that most non-Japanese websites that talk about Calorie Mate are quick to call it "apparently disgusting," and "oh grody, I mean balanced food block, what EVER." The truth is, it's not bad. It's designed as a rudimentary energy source, and it does the job. You could do much worse...for example, this.

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