Which brand will take home the 2024 Super Clio for the best Super Bowl commercial? We'll find out on Feb. 12.
TMI, Geico gecko?
On Super Sunday, the little green guy rolls big in a quartet of :30s set to air during CBS pregame coverage.
Those ads also feature the recently resurrected caveman character, and derive from the insurance giant's 15-minute "Legend of the Lizard" mockumentary.
Here's a trailer:
And the commercials:
- Gecko's parents wanted him to become a doctor. (Paging Ken Jeong!)
- His bestie's some bro with a bad haircut. (Maybe try a mullet?)
- The reptile is left handed. Who knew?
- The faux GeckOs breakfast cereal looks grotesquely green. Yum.
- Gecko-Con attendees worship him as some kind of scaly Shatner-esque god.
The caveman's deliciously dismissive attitude almost steals the show. Geico unfroze the primitive pitchman from years of commercial inactivity as 2023 drew to a close, teasing a Big Game tie-in while keeping the strategy under wraps until now.
The push sprang from a business messaging need, says Ryan Raab, creative director at The Martin Agency, which developed the campaign. "We wanted to spotlight how easy Geico makes home, auto, jewelry, renter, and even pet insurance. When you think 'Geico' and 'easy,' the caveman comes to mind. It’s an instant connection for anyone over a certain age."
Indeed, the brooding brute's ads from the late-aughts used the line, "So Easy, Even a Caveman Can Do It." Here in 2024, he provides an extra storytelling dimension.
"In every documentary, the hero needs a foil, rival or opposite," Raab says. "We thought it would be fun to catch up with the caveman now that his glory days are behind him. Or are they?"
As for the creative process, director David Shafei tossed unrehearsed questions at the cast while the cameras rolled. "Questions they didn't know were coming led to oodles and oodles of footage and ad-libs," says Raab.
"Our creative team provided each character with a discussion guide that filled out every nook and cranny of their backstory," Raab recalls. "I want to say it was 40 pages long. Working more from a discussion guide than a script was a new process for all of us, but that's what made it so much fun."
"WW7's art department absolutely crushed it, building statues, painting murals, creating many artifacts and filling out every corner of the gecko's world to an impressive degree."
Indeed, the worldbuilding is impressive throughout, a fitting gecko-verse for marketing icons to inhabit during adland's biggest event of the year.
"The background of the Gecko-Con scene alone is just chock full of comedic detail," Raab says, "The long-form has a shot of the sunlight streaming through the caveman's arm hair that’s both beautiful and disturbing."
For those who just can't get enough—presumably, all evolved humans—here's the full-length fake-doc: