Pop Rocks: What's More Spock than Spock? Spock(s)
It's like every Star Trek fanboys wet dream! OG Spock, Leonard Nimoy, and newbie Spock, Zachary Quinto go head-to-head in Audi's snazzy new A7 commercial. In the ad, Nimoy is the old fuddy-duddy Spock, driving a Mercedes, of all the un-futuristic cars out there, which not only doesn't have the trunk space for his golf clubs, but it also won't tell him how the hell to get where he's going. All it does is drive, geesh.
The search for Spock is over. They are both right here.
The A7, however, is all ultramodern and has gadgets and gizmos that pop up when Qunito says, "Engage." Not really, but almost. The ad plays up the two's obvious differences; Nemoy is like 100 years old and his hair is a mess and Quinto is young and his 'do is full of product.
And while the commercial never explicitly mentions Tribbles or anything, it's more than obvious that the car company is trying to play up the Spock angle, which is pointy-eared (amiright, amiright!). Every time Quinto plays with one of the car's cool doohickies, a warp-speed sounding sonata plays, while Nimoy babbles the "Ballad of Bilbo Baggins" to himself, which is not Trek but certainly appeals to all the LARPers out there who have been trying for years to find a wormhole that will link Middle Earth to the Starfleet Command. Put that hand lotion away guys, he did that shtick back in the '60s!
Audi claims that the ad has "nothing" to do with Star Trek at all and they just happen to put these two actors together because they seemed like they may become BFFs and Audi is into that type of thing.
According to Joseph Assad, a rep for Audi, who was asked about the Star Trek tie-in:
"We were very conscious. At no point do we even mention the franchise at all."
But then again Nimoy does do the Vulcan death grip on Qunito, which, unless you want to count Silent Bob in Mall Rats and the original Doctor Who, is a Vulcan's preferred method for knocking a brother out (That was the geekiest thing I've ever written).
What's even more suspect is that, oh yeah, there's that new Star Trek movie coming out May 17 that according to early predications may rake in more than $80 million its first weekend. Ya' think that will help push the Audi A7 into a place where no car has gone before? But the pot thickens.
Star Trek Into Darkness already has a car sponsor, of course, and Audi is not it. In fact, the movie has teamed up with Mazda's new 6 sedan, which touts some marketing ballyhoo called SkyActive technology.
I don't know about your car company's advertising department, but if I worked for Mazda I'd be trying to beam Audi the hell out of there. However, since there's no real tie in to the franchise, there's nothing Mazda can do to Audi save smack talk them behind their backs at the next Advertising Federation luncheon while staring really hard at them when they win a bunch of awards for the Spock commercial, which they will. Some people in the biz are saying it's the "best commercial of all time." But those people are saying that as they struggle to hike up their red Starfleet uniforms over their grape soda-guts at their late-night Dungeons Dragons game in their motel room after Comic-Con. Nerds!
Who am I kidding; I once made a mug in my high school ceramic's class that had, "Tea, Earl Grey. Hot." carved into the side of it.