By Barry Janoff
January 26, 2017: Mr. Clean has been an iconic marketing mascot on Madison Avenue, representing the cleaning products for which he is named, almost since his first appearance some 60 years ago.
Now, the ageless Mr. Clean gets to make an appearance on what is arguably the world’s biggest marketing stage, the Super Bowl.
The Mr. Clean brand, a division of NFL marketing partner Procter & Gamble, is the official cleaner of Super Bowl LI.
Mr. Brand the ad mascot appears in a 30-second spot in which he has been re-envisioned as a sexier version of his already chiseled and — with his shaven head, gold earring and mysterious background — genie-like character.
In the spot, "Cleaner of Your Dreams," a woman becomes enamored when her vision of Mr. Clean not only turns her house spotless, but turns her into a romantic puddle. Ultimately, the animated Mr. Clean morphs into the woman’s real-life not-so-mysterious husband, who, complete with his array of Mr. Clean and other cleansing products, she still finds irresistible.
According to P&G, "Studies which show that couples who share chores equally are more likely to have a happier relationship."
"Mr. Clean, the heartthrob of housework, knows that few things are sexier than a man who cleans," P&G explained with an overload of double-entendre. "(The commercial) features the iconic household cleaner, Mr. Clean, like you’ve never seen him before. His white T-shirt is a little tighter, his muscles are musclier and his bald head is somehow even sexier.
"Mr. Clean proves he’s got what it takes to satisfy your needs in every room of the house. Fair warning, things get a little dirty."
The 30-second spot is scheduled to air during the third quarter of Super Bowl LI on Fox on Feb. 5.
P&G is also expanding the conversation on social media with the hashtag, #MrClean.
Lead agency is Leo Burnett Toronto.
"Mr. Clean — both the man and his products — has always stood for toughness and versatility," Martin Hettich, vp-P&G Home Care North America, said in a statement.
"In his first-ever Super Bowl spot, Mr. Clean is showing off his strong and sexy side, and hopefully even inspiring men across America to pick up a mop and bucket themselves."
The commercial comes on the heels of contest launched by P&G this past September to find a new man to be Mr. Clean in personal appearances and other live activations because the current Mr. Clean "needed a vacation."
The winner was Mike Jackson of Atlanta, who surpassed all others during auditions, earning cash, a spot in a Mr. Clean calendar and the opportunity to take a PR tour.
Like the character that first made its marketing appearance in 1958, Jackson is bald, well-built and has a gold ring in his left air. Unlike the original Mr. Clean, Jackson is African American.
P&G said that Jackson would make numerous appearances, likely with extensive activation throughout Houston during the week of the Big Game, where he will joined by DeMarcus Ware of the Denver Broncos as Mr. Clean’s M.C.P. (Most Clean Player)
Jackson follows in the footsteps of the late Robert House Peters Jr., an actor in numerous B-Movies and on TV in 1950s and 1960s, who was the long-time live-action version of Mr. Clean in commercials and appearances.
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