A recent advert for the Renault Twingo shows a group of trendy young twenty-somethings in a car pulling up beside a night-club, and examining with dismay the long queues. Then the driver looks at a group of transvestites near the front, and catches one's eye. There's a flash of recognition. "Dad?" The father looks panic-stricken, terrified. His secret has been discovered, in such an awkward way and and in such a public place. This can only end badly. "Can you get us in?" The father's expression on seeing his son's ready acceptance and complete lack of judgement would melt butter.
Google throws its support behind the It Gets Better Project. There's an advertisement for Google Chrome in there, but the commercial is a minute and a half long, and Google Chrome is only mentioned for 2 seconds of that time.
This commercial about the bond of a Clydesdale horse and a puppy. And somewhere around there, it mentions beer, but it's about the puppy and the horse.
There's another Budweiser one, which focuses on making the right decisions when drunk. It shows how close a man is with his dog. One night, he goes out drinking with friends, and tells the dog he'll be back later. Hours pass, and the man doesn't come home, making the dog sad. The commercial then cuts to black, with the text, "For some, the waiting never ended," and you assume the worst (That the man drove drunk and died in an accident). But then, the man comes home the next morning, saying that he spent the night at a friends house because he didn't think it was a good idea to drive home. Friends are waiting, indeed.
The Iams "best part of adopting a pet..." commercials. The one where the woman brings the scruffy dog to his new home, and is trying to get him to play with a tennis ball. He lays down on the floor and stares at it, she gives up, he goes and brings her the tennis ball. Cue "...is when the pet adopts you" voiceover.
There's this one dog food commercial that shows a Westie looking over a sleeping woman in the early hours of the morning, and the words "I promise" and then "to be there when you wake up" appear. Anyone who knows the joys of waking up to a doggie can attest to this being pure CMOH.
Christmas themed Coke commercials. Especially the one where a baby polar bear is offered a Coke by a baby penguin. Too cute.
Coca-Cola is no longer the only company that can combine "polar bear" and "heartwarming". See Nissan's commercial for their new hybrid featuring a lone bear driven from his home by global warming and genuinely grateful to learn that not all Humans Are Bastards.
This trailer for Disney Nature's Oceans makes you realize you live on the best place in the universe, and you've barely seen any of it.
This World Cup ad that aired in Australia immediately prior to the WC opening ceremonies. It aired, sometimes in pieces, throughout the tournament. This ad will make you happy to be part of the world.
Nikon produced a series of advertisements for its cameras, around the idea of, "I am ... " while capturing moments with your camera. Overall, the ads were heart-warming and wonderful. But this ad, featuring Robbie Williams, is phenomenal. At about the 00:13 point, there's footage of Robbie asking a stadium full of people to hold up their cameras with the 'flash' switched on and take a photo, everyone, all at the same time. His "Oh my God!" as he staggers back suits the moment perfectly. It's brilliant.
This commercial for Coca-Cola, encouraging people to "look at the world a little differently", as it shows random (and not so random) acts of kindness from around the world, captured from security cameras.
Children and Children-at-heart
This AT&T Commercial, touching the wide eyed child in all of us. "Happy fifth birthday again..." and the World of Pure Imagination brings back memories of how beautiful the world can look to the imaginative.
This Japanese PSA should be shown in every country.
This is quite possibly my favorite commercial of the past five years. Even if you don't happen to be quite as big an NFL fan , you can't deny that the ending is one big D'AWWWW payoff.
Oh, and it's directed by David Fincher...which could really either be a credit to or a mark against it.
A Hallmark commercial, Tom's Coming for Christmas.. A young boy is waiting at Christmastime for his considerably older brother to come home for Christmas, so they can sing together in the choir. Alone and somewhat put off by his absence, the boy starts singing 'O Holy Night' and exactly when he gets to 'A Thrill Of Hope', his brother shows up and joins in.
A Kay Jewelers commercial. A man and his deaf wife are having Christmas together. The husband starts clumsily signing (while talking) that he learned a new sign for "Merry Christmas", which he uses as he hands his wife a box. She opens it and smiles when she sees the necklace inside the box.
This famous John Lewis advert from Christmas 2012. There's a reason it became so popular.
And here's the one for 2013, titled 'The Bear and the Hare'. Seriously, John Lewis make the best Christmas ads.
This Tim Hortons’ ad, all about hockey and fathers.
There was a MasterCard commercial in the early nineties, where a little boy is upset that his mother has to go away for work on his birthday. The mom is promising him all sorts of lavish presents when she gets back, but it's not working, so finally she asks him what he wants. Cut to the mother, on an airplane for her business trip . . . with the kid next to her. Awww . . . . .
From an A&W commercial: a guy and his wife visit her parents and it's obvious that he and his father-in-law do not see eye-to-eye. Even when he offers to take the family to A&W for dinner, Dad simply says, "I'll drive," and orders for the group, "Mama Burger, Papa Burger, and two Teens." Cut to the family sitting down, where the son-in-law is handing out the burgers. He gives to his father-in-law not a Papa Burger, but a "Grandpa Burger?" The couple smiles. Mom and daughter stand up and hug each other. Dad and son-in-law stand up, Dad puts a hand on his son-in-law's shoulder, smiles (for the first time in the spot), and says, "Where are my onion rings?"
An old commercial from a Finnish telephone operator: A little girl and her family are packing up for a vacation. The girl wants to take her giant teddy bear with her. It won't fit into her small suitcase, and her parents won't let her take the bear with her. So she packs with her a toy cell phone and waves bye to the bear as she leaves it sitting on a chair with another toy phone in its lap.
For this commercial, a father goes to meet his daughter, whom is rather surprised to see him, as it implies they haven't seen each other for a while. He tells her he's going to bring her to her favourite place. In confusion, she says that she doesn't have a favourite place. Turns out he brings her to Swiss Chalet, a place where she used to love as a child. The father dips his nose in some red sauce as a little imitation of Rudolph that he used to do just for his daughter. And he says in an absolutely heartwarming voice that he missed his daughter and she replies that she missed him too. As a bonus, she called him Rudolph too, a little nickname between the two of them.
A Hallmark commercial. A mother is sending her little daughter off to her first day of school. She hands the girl her lunch and waves as the bus drives off. The girl opens up her lunch and sees a card. She opens it, and as "Say" by John Mayer plays in the background, smiles as she sees the words "love you" written on the inside.
A 2003 commercial for Time Warner Cable's then-new remote feature to pause live TV had a kid coming to his father watching golf to ask him to help him with his homework. The father has an imagine spot of the kid failing his homework, getting kicked out of school and riding the rails with hobos. The father decides to pause his game and help his son.
A recent ad for Jello Pudding features a father and his son eating chocolate pudding. When the son asks his father what's so good about it the father explains a little about what his day was like to show why he looks forward to the pudding; the son imagines himself as his father going through everything his father describes. At the end the son pushes his own pudding cup toward his father and says, "You need this more than I do."
This Geicocommercial. Car insurance has never been more precious.
This Google commercial, titled "Parisian Love," where a man's relationship with a woman he met in France, from their first meeting to their first child, is tracked through his Google searches. "How to assemble a crib."
When Xbox Live first launched, we were given this lovely commercial. It's about four brothers who used to play Xbox all the time, but one of them gets married. As a wedding gift, the other brothers give him an Xbox Live subscription and microphone, so they can continue to play like they used to.
This commercial for Extra gum. A father entertains his daughter by making tiny origami cranes out of the gum wrappers. We see them together as she grows up, him offering her cranes in happy and sad moments. At the end, the grown daughter is moving out on her own and the father helps her pack up her car, and he accidentally knocks over a shoe box...full of origami cranes. Excuse me...there's something in my eye...
A commercial for the lotto. An old man and his friends go fishing at a pond every day, but they never catch anything. One night, the old man wins the lottery and spends his money on a truck full of fish and dumps them in the lake. When he and his friends next go fishing, they catch some. Awww!
This Canadian PSA commercial about two childhood friends and one in rehab due to drugs and his old friend visiting him. The song "He Ain't Heavy (He's My Brother)" in the background tilts it into Tear Jerker territory.
This ad for PS 4. Never before has the experience of playing video games with a good friend been so perfectly portrayed.
This and this. The Liberty Mutual "Good Deeds" commercial are popular sources of this trope.
A commercial about a little girl whose dog is missing and she's putting up lost dog signs. A guy notices and starts a chain with his phone to find the dog while the girl is walking home. When she gets home and sees her dog waiting for her . . . /runs off weeping.
And the fact that the group managed to get Tyler Hansborough who has been something like the face of Collegiate basketball for the past 3 years to help out and deliver the dog as well.
There was this commercial where a little old lady, who is blind, is trying to cross the street, but couldn't. So she asked the man beside her to help her, which he did. As they were walking across the street, we see that the man helping her was also blind.
There used to be a PSA where a couple of gruff businessmen are bulling their way through an airport. One of them runs into a little boy and he spills the puzzle he's been working on all over the floor. Businessman immediately stops, asks if he's OK, and helps him pick it up. Other businessman: My God. Hurry up. We'll miss the plane. Little boy, looking at helpful businessman: Are you God?
This commercial from the Make a Wish Foundation. It takes the collaboration of the town and a good-hearted teacher to make one boy's wish to be a superhero come true.
A clown entertains a crowd. The clown sees a young girl with a cap on her head. The clown tries to take off the cap. The mother shakes her head and takes off the cap for him. The young girl is bald and dying from cancer. The clown resumes entertaining the crowd, asking them to put money into the cap. The clown then places the cap on the girl. When he takes it off again, her hair is back, her sickness is gone. The mother cups her hands over her mouth and cries.
A commercial for a chain of retirement homes with an old man talking about his life from boyhood on a farm with chickens, through military service and marriage, to how he's now living in "a rather nice care home" - and they even let him keep chickens. At that point the shot changes so his hands are full of baby chicks and it's adorable.
There is a PSA about counting others in that has aired on This TV Twin Cities. It features a handicapped boy who can't participate in a soapbox car race because it would be impossible for him to get inside the soapbox. Another boy decides to stop being in the race to have the handicapped one race. They decorate his wheelchair with fancy stuff and he wins the race.
This commercial might be one of my favorite ads of all time. Sure, it's inadvertent message is "Supporting this billion dollar company, as opposed to the other billion dollar company, makes you a unique individual", but that beautiful girl taking out her head phones and standing up is a truly awesome moment. What eyes!
Teach. A commercial to encourage more people to become teachers.
This ad showing what McDonald's can do for a special person.
These ads for Gold Blend. They were played in a 5 year time-period so the last one resulted in "Squee" and "Awww" throughout the land. In fact, they were so popular that they spawned a novel called Love Over Gold.
In the United States these commercials were retooled to where Anthony Stewart Head played an American man (and the British woman stayed British) and were for Taster's Choice coffee. They were also wildly popular in the U.S.
This commercial. The woman signs that she's tired that things are always the same and instead of letting her rant on, her boyfriend/husband hands her the coffee, signs that he loves her and wipes away a tear. The tagline states "It's not what you say, it's what you do." Awww!
Another one from McDonald's, this time from India. Who would've thought the McAloo Tikki (a veggie burger made out of potatoes) would be enough to start Puppy Love between two Indian children?
The new commercial for AXE Body Spray. Yes, really. It shows four war-related scenes from all over the world—a bombed out urban battleground with a woman confronting a tank; a helicopter landing in a southeast Asian village and an American GI jumps out; a military parade held in what really isn't supposed to be North Korea, we swear, guys!; and a man carrying a "nuclear football" case through a middle-eastern palace to the man in charge. But Shocking Swerve ensues:
That bombed out city battlefield? the driver pops out of the tank, the woman (his girlfriend) calls out his name and runs up to him and hugs him.
The helicopter landing in the village? The GI runs up to the woman and she kisses him, dropping his gun in a puddle of mud.
The military parade? On cue, the crowd holds up panels that form a mosaic of the leader and his beloved framed in a heart. She sneakily holds his hand while he grins like the cat that got the canary.
The guy with his finger on the button? He presses the button and it cues up a fireworks display for her. She loves it.
"This Bud's For You" it's more than just a catchy song. It's the singer thanking all of the people in his city that help him through his day.
Even when they are trying to maximize sales, beer makers will often make commercials specifically to warn parents not to let their kids drink.
There's this really cute one from Duracell where the infamous drumming bunny and a toy duck are left behind after a picnic, and set off after their owner. Which moment is sweeter - the bunny dragging the duck when the duck's battery runs out, or the 2 being reunited with their owner?
This Nike commercial which played after the Boston Red Sox defeated the New York Yankees in the 2004 ALCS. Just do it, indeed.
You probably have to be a Florida alum for this effect to kick in, but the university'sseriesof"Go Gators!" commercials bring a tear to my eye every time. Especially those last two.
It seems so sweet that Anthony Sullivan became the spokesman for OxiClean after Billy Mays' death...
This "The Simpsons" based Coke commercial. Sure Mr. Burns is an evil Jerkass, but that doesn't mean he can’t have a break every once and a while!
By demand of the kids, the Trix Rabbit finallygets Trix!
This commercial advertising the phrases "please" and "thank you." Oliver Twist asks his famous "Please, sir, may I have some more?" and while most of the people mock him, the man manning the gruel dumps more into his bowl, to which Oliver says "Thank you." When questioned why he gave the boy more, the man responds "Well he did say please. And thank you, too." Cue all the orphans getting up to ask for more.
This ad by Coca-Cola that played during Superbowl XLVIII deserves a mention. The people in this ad come from various walks of life and ancestry, but regardless of whether they came to seek better opportunities or escape persecution, it is a touching tribute to the people who call the United States home.
In a way, theseads, for butter and Lipton respectively, both featuring Willard Scott. Sure, he might be a bit of a Base Breaker due to his rather odd behavior, but he's just so cheerful and near-impossible to dislike.
This, this, and this commercial from Duracell. (This is part of the same series, but too... cliche?)
This truly tearjerking ad for seatbelt safety might just get the point across more effectively than anything gory or violent ever could have. 11 millionYouTube hits can't be wrong.
Troops and 9/ 11
This Anheuser-Busch ad, which is also Truth in Television. The same thing happened at the Atlanta airport. The real deal was even more moving, because it was happening approximately every 5 minutes as more and more troops arrived.
There is a Bell Canada ad that they usually air in November, which features a young man standing on a grey coastline. He's on his cellphone, and talking to his Grandfather. He mentions he's in France, where by his grandfather asks how Paris is, and if the girls are as lovely as he remembers, and the grandson replies with "No, grandpa, I'm not in Paris. I'm in Dieppe. I just wanted to say thank you."
For those of you wondering, look up the battle of Dieppe.
In the wake of the September 11th, 2001 attacks on the United States, the US Postal Service released this commercial to indicate that the post office, a constant presence since the founding of the nation, would not let anything stop it, or the nation it has served, and continues to serve, for the last two hundred plus years.
We are mothers and fathers, and sons and daughters, who every day go about our lives with duty, honor, and pride. And neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night, nor the winds of change, nor a nation challenged, will stay us from the swift completion of our appointed rounds. Ever.