Ad of the Day: Masha Sings a Sultry Remake of ‘Werewolves of London’ for Three Olives Vodka

A beast on the prowl

So, you're a werewolf, and it's your night to howl. Your drink of choice would be … a Bloody Mary? A piña colada at Trader Vic's? A Coors Light, aka the Silver Bullet? Nah, too risky.

Actually, a martini made with Three Olives Vodka should hit the spot, according to the stylishly offbeat "Werewolves of London" campaign from The VIA Agency.

The wolf's-night-out narrative unfolds across several short clips, and there's a three-minute music video of popular YouTube chanteuse Masha Shirin performing the 1978 Warren Zevon classic—all bathed in cool nocturnal hues and directed with great sophistication by Anthony Mandler (who also directed VIA's work for 1800 Tequila starring Ray Liotta).

The story's simple. A lycanthropic lothario—you know the type: a real alpha male, pretending to be something he's not (in this case, human)—prowls chic London bars looking for … well, a bite, I suppose. When our lupine ladies' man finally does take someone home, there's a subtle sort-of twist … but the evening's denouement isn't actually revealed.

The dapper dude's dual identity is well handled. We catch quick flashes of his fangs and wild facial hair—in mirrors, or just his mind's eye—that clue us in to his true nature. And his eyes have a tendency to glow. (Too much vodka will have that effect. Tomorrow, he'll be reaching for the hair of the dog.)

Masha's slinky, subdued rendition—half spoken, half sung—helps create a sultry/spooky atmosphere, though I miss the familiar "Aaahoo!" howling from Zevon's original.

Greg Smith, CCO at VIA, says the work is designed to take "the typical Three Olives Vodka drinker to the extreme, creating a protagonist whose polished exterior belies the beast within."

Of course, we can't take that notion, or the campaign's story line, too literally. If we did, it would mean our classy canine cruiser plans to ply unsuspecting women with vodka and then tear them limb from limb. (That's what werewolves do. Along with shedding all over the sofa.) Even seeing the wolf as a metaphor, the ads come a little close to objectifying women as prey.

Either way, there's an un-P.C. tension that, for better or worse, should help Three Olives stand out among more typically watered-down, night-on-the-town spirits advertising.


Client: Three Olives Vodka/Proximo Spirits

SVP of Marketing: Elwyn Gladstone

Brand Director James Bruton

Agency: The VIA Agency, Portland, Maine

Chief Creative Officer: Greg Smith

Executive Producer: Mary Hanifin

Creative Director: Ken Matsubara

Creative Director: Ian Dunn

ACD, Art Director: David Grindon

Sr. Writer: Kristen Kriisa

Group Strategy Director: Jason Wright

Brand Planner: Lyndsey Fox

Producer: Dustin Levine

Production Co.: Believe Media

Director: Anthony Mandler

EP/Production Co.: Liz Silver

Director of Photography: Dave Devlin

Editorial: P.S. 260

Editors: JJ Lask and Matt Posey

Sr. Producer: Laura Lamb Patterson

Audio Design: Marshall Grupp, Sound Lounge

Audio Mix: Tom Jucarone, Sound Lounge

VFX / Finishing: Eight VFX

VFX Supervisor: Yannick Leblanc

Artists: Fred Hopp, Fabien Coupez, Philip Ineno, Vincent Blin, Alex Postelnicu

Producer: Alyssa St. Vincent

Colorist: Tom Poole, Company 3

Music: Jared Gutstadt and Jingle Punks

VP/Music Supervisor: Jesse Korwin

Dir. of Licensing: Shota Ike

Vocalist: Masha

Werewolf of London: James Lee Taylor

@DaveGian David Gianatasio is a longtime contributor to Adweek, where he has been a writer and editor for two decades. Previously serving as Adweek's New England bureau chief and web editor, he remains based in Boston.