The best ads of 2019, according to you

From that rascal chicken sandwich to Apple's holiday tearjerker.

Wow. It’s been a year. It’s. Been. A. Year.

The decade-ender bought us memorable campaigns -- for all the right and wrong reasons. 

We’ve asked some of the industry’s finest to share their favorite ads of 2019. The catch, however, is that it couldn’t be a spot their agency has worked on.  

The Surprise by Apple

Julia Melle, Creative Group Head/Writer, The Richards Group
I really loved the recent Apple  Holiday spot called "Surprise" for its production value, use of  music, casting and performance. It’s a great example for our industry in that it could easily have been passed over in an internal meeting for feeling too familiar; kids use product to make endearing gift for a grandparent. I applaud the ability to see the end potential of an idea.

I feel we have a tendency to say "I’ve seen that before"  without considering the production details that could make it wonderfully unique. The grandfather’s performance is superb and makes it beautifully authentic. What can I say, "Surprise" made me laugh, cry, envious and endeared me yet again to the power of Apple. Success

The Blank Edition by An-Nahar

Laura Visco, Deputy Executive Creative Director, 72andSunny Amsterdam
I love this idea because of its powerful simplicity. Sometimes not saying nothing at all can be the best way of protest and confrontation.

And it's the perfect example when advertising meets activism. I think the idea became even more powerful with the current protests happening in Lebanon.

Popeye's chicken sandwich 

Mike Duda, Founder, Bullish
The viral nature of Popeye's Chicken Sandwich. In an attack-brand, boycott-business social media world, Popeye's benefitted from a legitimately viral action fueled by humans, not influencers. Bravo.

Game of Thrones X Bud Light | Official Super Bowl LIII Ad

Ryan Wagman, Chief Creative Officer, 160over90
This one wins for me on degree of difficulty alone. Two powerhouse agencies had to find a way to come together. Two killer brands had to see mutual benefit. Dozens of clients had to be courageous enough to...murder a brand icon. But mostly, this spot wins, because it’s just so good. One of the most shocking moments of TV all year.

We Belong To Something Beautiful by Sephora

Danielle Koffer, Chief Client Officer, Mindshare USA
I loved Sephora’s "Identify as We" campaign featuring Fatima Jamal. It helps remind us that make-up is not a mask but a creative freedom that is accessible to all. It celebrates pride and diminishes insecurity.

In this strained political climate, illustrating a point of view can be polarizing. This stance works for Sephora on several fronts - it’s authentic, and it has heart and ambition, without straying too far from the products they sell and the role it plays in these influencers’ lives. It’s a campaign that’s beautiful on the inside and out.

Crocodile Inside by Lacoste

Peter Nicholson, Chief Creative Officer, Periscope
My favorite campaign this year is the continuing Lacoste campaign and sepcifically "Crocodile Inside" execution. The reason it is my favorite is it is all about love. The visualization of the human relationship and overcoming obstacles that can break us apart is beautiful. The spot is such an emotional story, while contrived it still is undeniable and reflects the relationship to the Lacoste brand most of us have. This brand is very consistent in its beautiful storytelling of Love year after year. 

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