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High Five: Tongue in Cheek


Zunade Powell, sales rep at Moirai Films shares the top five ads she has enjoyed re-watching over the years

High Five: Tongue in Cheek

Creatives continuously inspire me in how they explore culture, granting us access into a new way of thinking and highlighting the commonalities of culture through shared experiences. In no specific order, I have enjoyed re-watching these adverts over the years, whether just for laughs, or used as an example in a hot topic over dinner with friends...

Amazon - 'Mind Reader'

Agency: Lucy Generals
Production: Hungryman LA
Director: Wayne McClammy

As someone who was very much against the idea of having Alexa in my home, I was eventually persuaded by my husband to embrace the technology, reluctantly. However, I found this 90-second advert about Alexa to be hilarious yet revelatory; one of my favourite scenes was the use of Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Little Lies’ poignantly exposing Scarlett Johanson’s private thoughts, once again 'revealing' the intrusive nature of AI. While this was a funny take on how AI can interfere with home life, it was a great example of how far we have come as a society and perhaps one should keep an eye on Alexa.

Budweiser - 'Whassup Budweiser'

Agency: Downtown Partners
Production: C&C Storm Films
Director: Justin Readon

Budweiser's iconic ‘Wassup’ advert was a classic advert at the time. I recall watching the advert as a child with my father and thereafter repeating the famous ‘wassup’ whenever we spoke on the phone for what felt like months. The word ‘wassup’ reflected the late '90s American urban culture, which had great global appeal. This advert was simple, yet so effective in highlighting the banter between friends, in person and over the phone, all while holding a Budweiser.  

Arla Foods - 'Cats with Thumbs'

Agency: Wieden + Kennedy London
Production: Smith and Jones Films
Director: Ulf Johansson

'Cats with Thumbs' was a surreal and compelling advert, which I felt separated the Cravendale milk brand from its supermarket competitors. The idea that the loveable, furry members of our family, were being portrayed as milk connoisseurs and offering their seal of approval to the brand, was an interesting, appealing and had a funny twist, as we know cats like milk.

IKEA - 'Silence the Critics'

Agency: Mother
Production: MJZ
Director: Tom Kuntz
Sound: Wake The Town

Growing up in South London in the 2000s, grime was an important genre for myself and many of my peers, as it reflected the culture at the time and the way we interacted with each other. The concept was brilliant, the personification of the objects added a comedic element that seemed authentic and not far-fetched.

SK-II - 'Marriage Market Takeover'

Production: Forsman & Bodenfors
Director: Floyd Russ
Sound: Future Perfect Music

A slightly different choice to the adverts above, I chose to include 'Marriage Market Takeover' because it was revolutionary. While this ad was part of SK-II's global #changedestiny campaign, I felt Floyd Russ artfully brought to light a social issue which aimed to elevate the self esteem of women in China, who would have otherwise felt discarded because of society labelling them as ‘the leftover women’ if they were single at 25. As a 28-year-old woman at the time, I could relate to the emotions and comments reflected in the advertisement, and loved how it challenged the ideology of the culture and brought about the acceptance of self.

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High Five, Wed, 19 Apr 2023 11:30:03 GMT