Sun Times Critic Gets Beery-Eyed Over The Lost Art Of Copywriting

Lewis Lazare: It’s almost enough to make a grown man weep for joy. We’re talking about the debut this week of a dramatically different ad campaign from trendsetting shop Wieden + Kennedy in Portland, Ore., for Miller High Life, known for many years as the champagne of bottled beers.
Miller High Life’s gloriously literate “Girl in the Moon” commercial is precisely the sign we’ve been awaiting. Claiming the juice had drained from the rather engaging Miller High Life campaign distinguished by the crusty old codger voiceover, Wieden + Kennedy is replacing him with someone far more exciting — someone who totally upends the conventional wisdom about what beer advertising should be.
Rather than delivering yet another beer execution with a painfully obvious male-focused point of view, the hauntingly beautiful “Girl in the Moon” spot comes at beer advertising from a decidedly female perspective, featuring, as it does, the famous girl in the moon on the Miller High Life bottle logo personified as the voiceover spokeswoman.
Beyond that startling departure from tradition, “Girl in the Moon” absolutely revels in the glory of words, a component of compelling advertising that had all but vanished in recent times.
This “Girl” is filled to overflowing with beautifully strung together, emotionally engaging verbal images that play off of, and exquisitely detail, the theme of the important and memorable moments — both good and bad — in one’s life. The way this commercial takes that theme and weds it to Miller High Life’s own 100-year history is a thrilling demonstration of the greatly under-appreciated art of copywriting.

About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.