I thought they didn’t exist. I thought it was impossible. Honestly, I just never thought anyone would come up with a good premise for a cell phone commercial. What with the holier-than-thou “If you don’t have an iPhone, you don’t have an iPhone” TV spots and the obnoxious T-Mobile girl, it seemed unlikely that Virgin Mobile would be able to break the chain.
But break it they did, with their hilarious “Sparah” campaign. The tagline? “With our unlimited web and data, the world needs another celebrity couple to follow.”
According to Virgin Mobile’s commercials, Sparah is “a celebrity couple manufactured entirely by Virgin Mobile.” Their name is a combination of the halves—Sarah Carroll and Spencer Falls. Sparah, “pulled from obscurity” and then given a mansion, a stylist, a dog and a huge endorsement deal, is trying to become a legitimate celebrity couple, despite being fake and created by a cell phone company.
They’re certainly making progress toward that goal. Spencer Pratt and Heidi Montag (Speidi), the infamously awful couple from The Hills, recently raged at Virgin Mobile to TMZ for copying them with Sparah, sparking a full-out celebrity feud. Ashton Kutcher even jumped into the fray, tweeting that in a fight between the two Spencers, he would bet on Spencer Falls. We all know that when Ashton Kutcher gets involved, stuff gets real. Sure enough, Sarah posted a video inspired by Ashton’s tweets, telling Spencer Pratt, “My boyfriend could beat you in literally anything.”
Feuds with other fake couples aside, Sparah has been documenting its rise to celebrity status through webisodes posted on Virgin Mobile’s facebook page and on the Sparah website. From their first meeting to their makeover to their recent “sexy” photo shoot, all of Sparah’s crucial moments on their journey to fame are there. Sparah is constantly being yelled at by advisers/stylists/directors at various levels of flamboyancy, and it’s ridiculously fun to watch.
Of course, the real reason for Sparah’s existence is Virgin Mobile—they carry the phones everywhere and even got a lesson from Morgan Spurlock (that guy who made Super Size Me) on how to be ambassadors for the brand.
So, collegiettes™, does it work? Considering how quickly I got pulled into the whole Sparah world (I watched all seven webisodes in a row and googled “Sparah v. Speidi” multiple times) I’d say yes. Sparah works because it never pretends to be anything other than what it is—a big company trying to sell its product. The honesty makes the over-the-top end product funny, addictive, and just plain silly.
Sorry Speidi, but Sparah gets my vote!
Need more Sparah? Check out Sarah’s and Spencer’s twitters!