Monday, Nov. 03, 2008

Old Spice's meta-humor

This spot lives and dies on Neil Patrick Harris' perfectly smug face. With great faux solemnity, the actor — who as a child starred in Doogie Howser, M.D. — opens the door and says, "Chronic body odor ruins lives." This line alone would be an effective ad. But Harris then goes on to stroll the halls of an odd hospital, full of hot doctors sloppily making out in full view (Grey's Anatomy dig, anyone?). The joke reaches a crescendo when he enters an operating room, holds up his hands for a pair of nonexistent gloves and slaps a stethoscope bulb down on his patient's face. "I used to be a doctor for pretend," he says. Perhaps, but his charisma is very real.