I’m probably stating the obvious here but swapping out incandescent bulbs with more energy-efficient lighting options (preferably with long-lasting LEDs) is one of the easiest, most vital low-hanging fruits to conquer when embarking on planet-improving home improvement projects. It would make sense then that there’s always somethin’ a brewing on the energy-efficient light bulb front on or around Earth Day and this year is no different.

Following last month’s release of a low-cost, high-performance LED that aims to shake up the consumer lighting industry, North Carolina-based Cree has just launched a “national consumer awareness campaign” (read: series of TV ads) to help sell the technologically advanced, non-threatening-looking bulb —"The Biggest Thing Since the Light Bulb" — while also promoting the numerous virtues of LED-based lighting. According to the Energy Information Association (EIA), lighting alone accounts for 13 percent of electricity spending in the average American household. The ads are geared to provide consumers with “a new way of thinking about the cost of not switching to energy-efficient LED lighting.”

The six supremely cheeky Cree LED Bulb TV spots are being billed as a first for the lighting industry although non-awareness-raising light bulb commercials aren’t exactly unheard of (cat in a vacuum cleaner, anyone?). Starring mega-authoritative actor Lance Reddick (“Fringe,” “The Wire,” “Oz”) and directed by Jesse Peretz (erstwhile Lemonhead, 90’s alt-rock music video director extraordinaire, and the man responsible the criminally underrated 2011 Paul Rudd comedy, “Our Idiot Brother”), the spots debuted this past weekend during the first round of the NBA playoffs.

I won’t give much away too much about the Cree LED Bulb ads except to say they’re pretty fantastic ... especially if you’v ever longed to see Edison’s pride and joy be respectfully laid to rest during a snowy bagpipe funeral by none other than Lt. Cedric Daniels

I’ve embedded my three favorite spots bellow. You can view all six at the Cree YouTube channel and purchase your own Cree LED Bulb online and at brick and mortar Home Depot locations nationwide. In addition to the TV spots with Reddick, Cree has been working with easy-on-the-eyes environmentalist and actor Ian Somerhalder to promote the bulbs.


Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

'Nostalgia is dumb': Cree launches LED-promoting TV spots
Realizing that some folks may need further convincing to ditch incandescents, LED pioneer Cree releases a series of TV spots starring Lance Reddick.