3 great ads I had nothing to do with: Aidan McClure

In 2018, McClure joined Wonderhood Studios as a founding partner and chief creative officer. Wonderhood Studios is an independent TV production company and advertising agency operating under one roof that focuses on powerful storytelling.

McClure started his career in advertising working at some of London’s top agencies, including AMV BBDO, Mother and BBH. He joined Adam&Eve in 2010 writing award winning work for Phones 4u, Google, Fosters and John Lewis. When Adam&Eve merged with DDB in 2012, he was made creative director at Google before taking up the same role at VW UK in 2014. He was also creative director for award-winning work across John Smiths, Colman’s, the AA and McCain Foods.

In 2016, McClure joined the BBC to help set up BBC Creative: the corporation’s in-house creative agency responsible for all of the BBC’s marketing output, including the 2018 World Cup. 2017’s Christmas campaign, ‘The Supporting Act’ became the BBC’s most successful commercial ever winning numerous UK and international awards. 

Aidan's choices

Microsoft Xbox ‘Ear Tennis’

A Chinese national sports hero engages in Rocky-like training and gets country-wide praise for his Wimbledon-worthy finesse in swatting ping pong balls with his paddle-shaped ears. He's documented so well you might believe that there really does exist such an oddly endowed player, as well as his accompanying fanbase. Turns out, the ad shot by director Lionel Goldstein, is all fabricated. We don't know if the hero will ever make it to the Olympics, but the BBH spot did earn a Gold Cannes Lion, a Bronze Clio and a Silver & Bronze Award at the British Arrows.

Mumsnet "Elleemae"

37% of parents in the UK have not taught their child to call the emergency services, mainly because they don’t think their child is mature enough. Elleemae’s story proves even the youngest children can save a life. The 60-second spot by Grey London features real audio of five-year-old Ellemae Addison saving her mother who had an epileptic fit in 2012 – underlining the importance of teaching children how to react in the case of an emergency. The campaign was supported by the Red Cross and received substantial investment from Vodafone.

Audi "Clowns"

The "Clowns" spot, created by Bartle Bogle Hegarty, depicts the circus stars wreaking havoc on the roads with their antics. Audi vehicles save the day with tech safety features including adaptive cruise control and park assist, introducing the tagline "Audi technology. Clown proof."The ad marks the return of award-winning director Ringan Ledwidge, who directed Audi’s "Duel" spot in 2016. "Clowns" was written by Doug Fridlund and art directed by Mikael Alcock.

About this series

In this series of short films, leading Thinkbox Academy members have the tricky task of selecting just three TV ads that have inspired them: brilliant commercials, old and new, that they admire but had nothing to do with. The idea is not only to explore some of our greatest ads in the company of people who know a thing or two about making them, but also, because of the proven link between creativity and effectiveness, to inspire the advertising industry to even greater heights.

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