The hockey wasn't exciting down the stretch of the 2016 NHL season but the commercials raised a few positive eyebrows. We don't normally have a theme to the ads, but embracing regionalism fits in well with some of the ads during the MLB Extra Innings/NHL Center Ice free preview.
This Captain Morgan white rum ad contrasts the uniqueness of the Maritimes. The brightly coloured houses. The laid-back lifestyle. And somehow, a pet lobster.
The local guy welcomes the neighbour who just moved from Toronto. Things are different on the East Coast, including the colour of the rum and that pet lobster. The street is on a slant, which reminded me of being in Halifax and St. John's, cities built on a hill.
Things are different on the East Coast; nice to see that flavour in an ad.
People singing for their supper can draw your attention in an ad. Using real Cavendish potato farmers to sing about what they hope is part of your dinner, namely Cavendish Potato Fries, was silly but fun.
This ad celebrates the specialness of Prince Edward Island: music and potatoes. Having them together is a dish you don't normally get.
The Cavendish Farms Flavour Crisp wedges and fries come in classic, herb and garlic, and fiery cajun.
You could sample the food yourself on Prince Edward Island: Canada's food island. The food mentioned visually and from our guide is seafood, and there is plenty of seafood. Potatoes get a pass in this ad.
This ad ran on the Ottawa Senators telecasts on TSN5. The Senators region covers the 4 Maritimes provinces, Quebec, and the Ottawa area, so this ad plays on regional travel. Luring Americans and Europeans is a successful practice, but getting to PEI from New Brunswick and Nova Scotia is a lot easier.
A&W Canada didn't set this ad in the Maritimes, but we have noticed that they set their spots in specific Canadian locales. For a wintertime setting, you can't get too much more iconic than Rideau Canal in Ottawa.
Skating around talking about the quality of a fast food burger isn't likely, but you know you are in Canada in these A&W ads. A lot of ads run in Canada with only slight variations. This ad couldn't run in the States, or if it did, no one would get the iconic reference.
A second ad for A&W for the jalapeno chicken burger looked like it was shot in Vancouver. That could be true or wishful thinking.
The Molson rooftop is likely Toronto, though that isn't spelled out. The ads where they played on a mountain top were rather awesome, but playing on a rooftop in a downtown building, especially against former NHL stars, has its own level of awesomeness.
This has little to do with beer, but after seeing so many beer ads from American beers that don't celebrate Canada, Molson is a welcome sight. Budweiser, the grand exception to the rule, is building on the goal lights toward the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.
Tim Hortons is technically a donut shop but the coffee is more of a star in its ads. This ad reflects back on a lot of Tim Hortons coffee over the years as the patriarch writes meaningful dates and moments on cups. The daughter discovers the box full of sentimental cups as they are cleaning out their parents house for a move.
With such a sweet story, you don't need to add sweetener to the coffee.
McDonald's Canada runs nicer ads than their counterparts in the States. This ad touts National Hiring Day by pointing out that they trust Canadian youth to run their restaurants.
Many adults also work at fast food restaurants, so the Canadian youth aren't the only ones working at McDonald's. But the idea of praising the next generation is worth showing this ad.
McDonald's has new chicken sandwiches that don't seem too unusual, yet has a dramatic new name: the 12.
The sandwich has a grilled or crispy seasoned Canadian chicken breast with white processed cheddar cheese, crisp leaf lettuce, fresh tomato, and applewood smoke seasoned sauce on a sesame and poppy seed glazed bun.
"The 12" symbolizes lunchtime, but the name indicates a cool millennial sandwich. Not sure this sandwich qualifies as cool.
KFC Canada tells us their chicken is "hand-breaded," a BS throwaway line. But it was fun watching an ad for KFC that actually talks about the chicken. KFC in the States has forgotten this concept in favor of comedians, Canadian or otherwise, dressed up as Col. Sanders.
This ad for Giuseppe pizza is not particularly Canadian, but my brain can't wrap around the idea that Canadian buy frozen pizza from Dr. Oetker. The sodium levels alone mean a doctor shouldn't be involved. But Canadians don't put as much thought into the company name as I do, a sign that they are truly Canadian.
You might notice that some of these ads come from our YouTube channel. Feel free to weigh in on the ads if you would like.
We really enjoy doing this feature but often found ourselves searching frantically on the Internet for an ad we just saw on TV. This way, you get to see the ad rather than have us try and explain an ad you can't see. The plan is to run more videos on our channel, so any feedback would be greatly appreciated. Enjoy!!
videos credit: companies in the ads
photo credit: McDonald's Canada