Best of 2012: Local TV Ads

Hands in the air if you love ads! Thought so. But rather than bemoan this necessary evil, we want to champion the ones that go above and beyond the call of marketing duty. We present our favourite TV ads of 2012.

"Strangers" (above)
Petronas
Agency: Leo Burnett KL
Why: Petronas commercials have become part of our staple diet during festive season. And while Yasmin Ahmad is sadly not with us anymore, the company has returned to form this year with a 14-minute look at the life of a Petronas worker in Uzbekistan. Directed by Quek Shio Chuan of Guang fame, it's simple, un-preachy, heartwarming. Just the way we like them Raya ads.

 
"The Sparkle Project"
Samsung
Agency: Leo Burnett KL
Why: At first glance, this looks like a Yuna music video with a Martin Scorsese-fetish and tonnes of hippie-wonderland animation. Instead, it's a unique collaboration between Samsung and the local soulful artisan that has resulted in the world's first music video created entirely with the Samsung Galaxy Note. 3,500 submissions of stories and artwork contributed to an original result; no word if drinking shots of whiskey enhances the viewing experience.

"3 Layer Tea"
F&N Malaysia
Agency: Lowe Malaysia
Why: With just a common drink, a spoon and some stirring, this illustrates what being a Malaysian means far better than most National Day speeches, parades and corporate propaganda newspaper posters. Replay this to your heart's content, and bottoms up.

"The Journey"
Bernas

Agency: Affinity Worldwide
Why: Simply, the ad that will fill every room of your heart with warmth. As if a premise of two disabled orphans - one deaf and one blind - making a journey on the eve of Hari Raya wasn't already moving, other factors make this commercial a gem. The actors themselves are handicapped: deaf 12-year-old Ahmad Abdul Matin Asmadi and blind eight-year-old Amirul Hafizi. The ad promotes Bernas “Bowls4Humanity” programme, donating 25 grams of every 10kg pack of Bernas rice purchased to orphanages around Malaysia. Combine it with a story of a friendship that overcomes very real barriers, and well. To the left, grab the tissue box.

"House Opening"
Hong Leong Bank

Agency: Naga DDB
Why: We all need a good bank officer to help us with our property purchases, food tasting, house openings, song choices for weddings, and interior decoration choices. We can dream, friends.

More from Esquire Malaysia