Thursday, Dec. 09, 2010

Nike: Write the Future

In typical Nike fashion, "Write the Future" is an imaginative, lavishly produced commercial that generated considerable buzz. The World Cup ad, which features world-class footballers like England's Wayne Rooney, Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo and Didier Drogba of the Ivory Coast, pictures a world in which everything hinges on the tournament. London's FTSE 100 index will crater, for example, if Rooney screws up for England, and he'll wind up living in a trailer as a groundskeeper. But if he succeeds, the commercial tells us, he'll be knighted, bear-hug the Queen and demolish tennis's Roger Federer in Ping-Pong. The fantasy clicked with even casual soccer fans. And it was indeed fantasy, as Rooney did screw up; he underperformed during the Cup, which England bowed out of in the round of 16 after being crushed by Germany 4-1. But last we checked, he's still playing for Manchester United, not trimming grass on the pitch.