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The M-Word: For iPad 2, Apple Makes Yet Another Ad Claiming It's "Magic"

Apple (AAPL) doesn't need to advertise the iPad 2, but for form's sake it has produced a TV commercial anyway. Don't fret if you haven't seen it yet -- because you have, in fact, already seen it in Apple's previous campaigns for older products. The spot combines three creative tropes that Apple periodically recycles in its new product advertising:

  1. A bourbon-tinged voiceover by actor Peter Coyote or someone who sounds like him.
  2. A disembodied finger pointing and swiping its way around the product.
  3. An insistence that the product is either "magical" or like "magic."
Here's the new spot, created by ad agency TBWA/Media Arts Lab, which says the iPad 2 is "magical":

An earlier product release video starring Apple design chief Jonathan Ive also described the device as "magical":

And the first ad for the original iPad announced "it's magical":

Apple's obsession with magic is historic. Here's an ancient commercial for its first, failed handheld device, the Newton, which argued Newton "is magic":

There's something to be said for consistency in branding, of course. When Apple airs a campaign, you know it's Apple. There's no confusion. And if there's a product that will sell well regardless of the advertising, it's iPad 2.

Still, success breeds complacency. It would be nice if the client and its agency at least tried to look as if they weren't iPhoning it in.


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