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Sony's "PSP Phone" Ads Rival Kevin Butler on Hilarity Scale

| 22 Mar 2011 19:35

After years of rumors, Sony finally pops open its ad campaign for the Xperia Play starring Kristen Schaal from Flight of the Conchords.

We've heard leaks from executives and bungled reveals from Chinese gadget bloggers but it now seems that Sony's telcom partner Ericsson is ready to throw down the gauntlet with its Xperia Play. It's a smartphone with a 4 inch screen, plus all the apps and Google Android goodness you could ever want, but the twist that each of these ads shows off is the slide-out panel with a d-pad and Sony's familiar button scheme. But it's really the new spokeswoman that sells it. Kristen Schaal has been a comedienne in New York for a long time and been seen in small parts on TV and in movies before finally getting some recognition as the superfan in HBO's Flight of the Conchords. As the pitchwoman for the Xperia Play, she really shines.

I wouldn't ordinarily drop in five ads for a product into a post, but these stand out as excellent specimens. Sony is no stranger to the value of quirky, nonsensical and over-the-top advertisements (see Kevin Butler), but I think they really hit a home run here with Schaal's promos for the Xperia Play. You could tell that she was given at least partial creative control because each one utilizes her comedic strengths, but that's not even what impresses me the most. I guess after seeing the utter fail that EA or Take Two have of treating woman and gamers as unintelligent horny 13 year old kids, its refreshing to honestly laugh at a pitch from a funny female comedian for a phone with some mobile gaming capability.

I was thinking about buying a 3DS, and worrying that my Palm Pre getting old, and these ads at least made me consider waiting to purchase an Xperia Play. I call that a win.

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