Priceline “Big Deal”

William Shatner has been shilling for Priceline for 13 years, the last three as the ever-bargain-hunting super-spokesman “Priceline Negotiator.” The ads have done such a good job branding the travel site with his comedic antics, I can’t even think about Shatner or say “Priceline Negotiator” now without singing those words (even when the Emmy-winning actor is Denny Crane.) The latest campaign from Butler Shine Stern & Partners heightens his deadpan humor by giving him a sidekick, the “Big Deal.” Yes, he’s big and he can deal, using the fists he’s decorated with the tattoos “Dollars” and “Sense.” With a floor-length fur and black brim hat adding to his unusual appearance, the curly-haired strongman steps in when Shatner’s first attempt to get a low price out of a hotel clerk falls flat. Big Deal cracks his knuckles and slams his fist on the counter, but when he speaks, he’s soft-spoken and polite and uses his wits instead of his brawn to prevail. “Is it wise to allow a perishable item to spoil?” he asks. The Negotiator goes on to reason with the clerk that it’s better to get some money than no money at all for a room that would otherwise be empty. The spot not only encourages customers to book with Priceline, but provides an explanation about how hotels can afford to go so low. Big Deal seems like a worthy accomplice, but Shatner still steals the show. –Eleftheria Parpis

Publish date: April 14, 2010 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT