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Back in the Saddle

  • Najib Benouar

From the looks of the first episode of Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, Seinfeld is up to his old “show about nothing” antics again.

This time around, he’s really pared it to near-absolute-nothing-ness: 12-minute episodes edited down from an afternoon spent chatting with a well-known funnyman. It’s all very Seinfeldian, but what’s most intriguing is the glimpse into the lives of off-duty celebrities—without any scripts or handlers or, most importantly, stylists. From what we’ve gathered from the promo and first episode, comedians are a schlubby bunch (save for Alec Baldwin). It’s a sad state: visible undershirts, white sneakers, Larry David playing Octogenarian Neo in the Boca Raton Seniors Community Theater adaptation of The Matrix.

But there were still some interesting items of note, especially Jerry’s watches. In this episode he’s wearing a Jo Siffert Heuer that we’ve gushed over before, which reveals some real watch aficionado/race car enthusiast cred. We also spotted a Breitling Navitimer in the promo (but will have to confirm once that episode “airs”), and Larry David’s only saving grace is that he’s found his way to an Oliver Peoples shop. It’s a good laugh any way you slice it.

If anything, watch the episode for the spectacular blogger-blue VW and keep an eye on further developments.

Kempt Man of the Hour: Terence Koh

Terence Kohvia GoaG

With Memorial Day already receding into our hazy memory, we thought we’d single out one of the better uses of summer whites we’ve seen. Ladies and Gentlemen, Mr. Terence Koh…

This snap comes from last week’s Volkswagen dinner at the Museum of Modern Art, where the rest of the crowd was clad in wool suits and silk ties. Mr. Koh opted for something both summery and avant garde.

Step one is getting genuinely white pants: none of this cream or off-white business. (Those beat-up bucks are allowed to be a little hazier, but don’t start getting sloppy.) The masterstroke here is the spread club collar, just to remind you he’s a forward thinker.

The result is what the aliens will look like when they land on Southampton.

Playing Games


The ad world is still figuring out exactly what to do with the iPhone, but an early test case was unveiled last night. Instead of a print campaign or a TV spot, the campaign for the new Volkswagen GTI is leading off with an iPhone game.

Real Racing GTI is a standard 3D racer—remarkably similar to the unbranded Real Racing, except that winning enters you into a weekly sweepstakes and every car in the game is Volkswagen’s new 2010 GTI. That means you’ll get a firsthand, mobile look at the dashboard, and no matter how you drive, a VW always wins.

As a game, it's not much to write home about; but as marketing, it’s one of the bolder moves we’ve seen this year. VW drivers are a pretty tech-y bunch to begin with, giving away a car a week will draw a fair number of them to the app, and in the process both the GTI and the iPhone will get a whole lot of converts. Maybe the Android folks should give Vespa a call.

Keeping it Surreal


We ran across this highbrow Volkswagen spot from the same dour German ad house that brought you the suicidal calorie. The tagline is “Absurdly low consumption,” but again, we didn’t expect things to get quite this bleak.

This time around, it’s more of an existential bleakness. Gas station attendants leave empty, headless lives while (in the Dalí version) pumpmen cry glass tears into a desert pond. See the nightmarish dreamscape that fuel efficiency has created! SUV ads always seemed to resemble sitcom interstitials, so VW is going the opposite way, creating a world with no cars, people, or even buildings.

Then again, we always love a good Magritte homage.

See their take on Dalí»