Shnoosee Bailey is managing partner and ECD of HeyHuman.
Desert Island Ads
Everyone is sort of on their own desert island at the moment, whether that be working in retail, working from home or not working at all. Despite the likes of Zoom and Houseparty coming to the rescue, everything still feels a little lonelier.
So I didn’t want to use the proverbial desert island as a device to make light of, or downplay, the current pandemic situation. Instead, I’ve just chosen the ads that give me the most joy. The ones that make me smile and laugh, make me believe that anything is possible. Because we all need a little bit of that at the moment.
Cadbury – Gorilla
Sure, it’s an obvious one. It’s featured in everyone and their dogs’ Desert Island Ads. But it’s just so… well, genius. You feel it with your heart and soul.
It’s all those wonderful little details. The gorilla’s expression. The fact that he’s wearing in-ear monitors. It’s such an odd premise, and normalising the subject makes it even more memorable. Plus, that Phil Collins drum fill is beyond iconic.
Samsung – Ostrich
Another ad, another animal, another iconic musician soundtracking it all, and one that’s jam-packed full of joy and hope.
The idea of an ostrich using a VR headset is ridiculous. It shouldn’t make me want to cry. But it does. The pathos as the ostrich tries and fails to fly; the Rocky-style training montage; and the fist-in-the-air, unbridled joy as the protagonist finally takes flight, and of course Elton John’s dulcet tones.
And that line at the end: ‘We make what can’t be made, so you can do what can’t be done.’
Everything about this is beautiful. The cinematography, the special effects, the soundtrack. Go on, ostrich.
Epuron – Mr. W
Revisited this one recently – love it! The wind is personified as a looming, misunderstood man who disrupts people’s days. He lifts up women’s skirts, he knocks men’s hats off, he ponders, “Maybe I was too intense” as he completely levels a gazebo.
The storytelling is incredible – the way it’s shot is perfect. I could genuinely watch this 100 times and never get bored.
They’re all just such great stories. It’s those twists on normal narratives, those sprinklings of Unusual Everyday, which make these ads some of my favourites of all time.