Someone screwed up the budget, the product died, it’s too risky, it’s too safe, the client’s neighbor had an idea — sound familiar? For one reason or another, good creative gets shelved inches away from the finish line. In some cases, even after it.


Here are a few ideas that were the last concept standing in their royal rumble - only to get blindsided by a chair-shot and steamrolled out the ring afterwards.



BRIEF: Traditional pricing books get it wrong. Carfax’s history-based value digital system is a more precise & innovative way to search for used vehicles. 

SOLVE: When your money is on the line, near enough is not good enough. Carfax keeps you from overpaying on a used vehicle, which means you can splurge on whatever else you’ve always wanted.



Open on a close up of a white horse with its mane blowing in the wind. Pan out to reveal the horse’s head is sticking out of a car window. 


Pan out more to reveal the horse is stuffed in the car’s backseat, head sticking out one side of the car and its butt sticking out the other. 


Finally, the pan out reveals the entire car with a smiling man in the driver’s seat and the Car Fox in the passenger seat.

VO/SUPER: When you don’t overpay on a used car

VO/SUPER: You can splurge on other stuff.

VO/SUPER: Like a horse.

Using his phone, the Car Fox clicks through

CAR FOX: helps you find the exact value based on the exact car, including its accident history, maintenance records, and more.



CAR FOX VO: Never overpay for a used car again at

BRIEF: Traditional pricing books get it wrong. Carfax’s history-based value digital system is a more precise & innovative way to search for used vehicles. 

SOLVE 2: The digital age has rapidly changed the world, yet means people use to determine a car's fair value has not.  Let’s illustrate how absurd it'd be if people used ridiculously old techniques to solve modern problems. 



Open on a teen sneaking into this house after curfew. The lights turn on. His dad sits on the couch staring at him.

TEEN (nervously): Hey, dad.

Silence. Cut to dad’s face.


DAD:  Carol, bring in the guillotine!


The boy’s eyes widen, as his mom pushes a massive guillotine into the room. He falls to his knees screaming.


DAD: 11 o’clock means 11 o’clock!


MOM: 11!


CARFOX/VO: There are more… modern ways to parent your kids.


CarFox suddenly appears. As he pushes the guillotine back off camera...


CARFOX: And now, there’s a more modern way to buy a used car.


CARFOX/VO: At, you can do more than search for used cars. You can search for used cars with No reported accidents and damage, or one with only one previous owner, and more.



CARFOX: Know the value, the deals, and get FREE CARFAX reports when you start your used car search at


Cut back to the scene where the guillotine blade drops slicing the boy’s phone in half.

BRIEF: Introduce Travelocity’s new travel app.

SOLVE: With such a groundbreaking innovative product - intended to disrupt the travel industry, no stage was too big or too small for a Gnome with a huge message. 


Open with a TED Talk-inspired intro. We see the back on an audience. In front of them, there’s an empty stage. Suddenly, there’s a faint buzzing sound, and the Roaming Gnome appears on a hoverboard zipping to center stage as applauses slowly cascade into silence. 

GNOME: What would you do if, in mid-air, you realized you’re going to miss your connecting flight? — Panic!


A light, collective chuckle from the audience.


GNOME: Yes. But after that? Who do you notify? Who do call?


Mumbling in the audience.


GNOME: You’re going to call Travelocity. Literally. With our Customer 1st Guarantee, you get access to the Travelocity app’s latest, innovation…


Excited audience chatters while the Gnome hovers to the right screen. It shows a beautiful, sleek phone with various apps.


GNOME: It’s simple. While in air, open the Travelocity app, connect to a WiFi source, and in moments you’re connected to a real live Customer 1st Guarantee Specialist who can easily book you a new flight! 


GNOME: Whether you’re in the air, or in another country without an international data plan, the answer to avoiding a travel tragedy is just a WiFi call away.


The Gnome begins hovering back to center stage.


GNOME: So the next time you miss a connecting flight, don’t wonder what to do. Book through Travelocity, and wander wisely. — Thank you.
The Gnome hoverboards off the stage. 

BRIEF: Highlight Travelocity's Customer 1st Guarantee to distinguish itself from other travel agencies.

SOLVE: The Customer 1st Guarantee is Travelocity's competitive advantage against competitors, and the Roaming Gnome is the genius behind it, which is why other travel agencies' mascots will attempt to "recruit" him. 


Inside an interrogation room, we see the Roaming Gnome tied up to a chair with a harsh spotlight in his face. Cut across the table to The Negotiator. We can’t see his face, but he sounds like William Shatner.
NEGOTIATOR: So, Travelocity's Customer 1st Guarantee will say yes to any booking request to keep family vacations happy, huh?
The Gnome just stares back at him. The Negotiator leans into the Gnome’s face (noses almost touching). He chuckles sinisterly.
NEGOTIATOR (whisper): Don’t worry. I’ll break you.
The Negotiator fires off a string of questions at The Gnome...
NEGOTIATOR: My family’s flight was suddenly canceled due to rain. Will Travelocity's Customer 1st Guarantee book us a new flight?

NEGOTIATOR: The hotel room mom booked looks exactly like the picture but smells exactly like an armpit. Can Travelocity's Customer 1st Guarantee find us a new room?
NEGOTIATOR: The wheels on the bus go round and round. The wheels on the family’s rental car do not. Will Travelocity's Customer 1st Guarantee put us in a new car immediately?

SUPER: To be continued...

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