Work That Speaks | Ad Reviews | 28 Dec 2020 to 3 Jan 2021

Brands that cut through: Kerala Tourism, OnePlus, Parachute Advansed, Redmi, Thums Up, WakeFit, Treeview, Coca Cola, CRED, Mahindra Tractors.

Work That Speaks | Ad Reviews | 28 Dec 2020 to 3 Jan 2021
Brand campaigns that cut through the clutter.

By Gokul Krishnamoorthy

Kerala Tourism | Change of Air | Mamma’s Trip

This Kerala Tourism spot is perfectly attuned to the times. As we move into the new year with hopes of travel, domestic travel is what tourism boards are betting on first. While there exists the craving to take wing, there is also the fear of stepping out. More than the virus itself, it is this fear of the unknowns that come with it that has impacted us in innumerable ways. The protagonist here is a mother who is concerned about the safety of her family and worried about the trip. What a ‘Change of Air’ in God’s own country can do to her is captured here. Set against the luscious greenery of the state to the accompaniment of sounds that are unmistakably Kerala, the film too is a breath of fresh air.

OnePlus | No More Normal | Get #BetterwithOnePlus

There have been questions on whether we need to ‘return’ to the old normal or life as we knew it before Covid19 – tellingly in the contexts of environment and wildlife. In this case, the brand pivots around the ‘normal’ in today’s conversation to underline its #NeverSettle philosophy. Why settle for normal, when you can get #BetterwithOnePlus is the pitch. One timed to perfection as we step into a new year.

Parachute Advansed | Pongal-O-Pongal | #EnMudidhaanNaan

The Hindi version of this film was a beautiful celebration of a woman’s special relationship with her locks. Adapting that for the Tamil audience would have been possible, but I doubt if it would have had the impact that this spot delivers. The brand here is not just talking to the Tamil consumer in her language, but also thinking in it. Rather than presenting one view of the Tamil woman, the brand does justice to the sub-cultures within Tamil Nadu (by geography, that is). They are all strung together by the celebration of hair, the largest shared festival of the state (Pongal) and a last word of hope for 2021.

Redmi | Come Dance With Mi

Danish Sait is turning out to be the darling of brands and with good reason. This is a perfect ‘New Year Party’ put together for Redmi. All the products are pitched straight at you but one really doesn’t mind when it’s done this entertainingly. My sense is that the Danish (especially the one with the Malayali accent) will be seen in many more pieces of brand content in 2021.

Thums Up | #LastMenStanding #TasteTheThunder

Just as one wondered how far Thums Up could possibly go with its high-adrenaline #TasteTheThunder action theme, and for how long, comes this zombie plot. It also pits two brand ambassadors against the non-humans also craving to get hold of the drink. Kudos for upping the ante yet again. I am curious to see what’s coming next. And, I do hope the ‘mard’ mention was a reference to humans and not a ‘macho’ statement.

WakeFit | Bhaad Mein Jaa 2020

A catchy qawwali that sums up our relief in exiting the year gone by was a smart way to cut through the many year-enders. The band / troupe performing on a Wakefit mattress would have been good enough. Signing off saying ‘Let’s sleep on this velvety mattress and forget 2020’ was genius.

Treeview | #NoJhooteVaadein

Television is a product category that hasn’t seen too many memorable ads in recent years. Like other high-indulgence categories like automobiles, they tend to speak product. Yes, some do it incredibly well, like Samsung did with the story of a young female footballer and her dad. So when we see an effort to go beyond cataloguing, it needs to be appreciated.

“Honest” is the premise for this Television brand – on price, technology and service. It has chosen the interesting route of wondering what would happen in a world where everyone was honest. Some laugh-worthy scenarios ensue, with the celebrity ambassador holding fort for the intro and delivering the brand promise at the end.

Coca Cola | Turn Up Your Day

This seems to be a sobered down version of the launch film of this campaign from March 2020. The premise of Ranbir Kapoor being the object of desire of young women who ogle him, is fresh.

CRED | It Pays To Be Good

What is it with CRED and celebrities? Yet another film featuring yet another celebrity, one to tell the world that paying bills honestly pays. Can’t blame this brand for being uninteresting.

Mahindra Tractors | #ToughHardum #ToughFarmer

Farmers are the flavour of the season. They have always been the core for tractor makers but the appeal of such content transcends them now.

This is the true story of a farmer who battled the odds to win, again and again. Among other things, he braved the topography of desert land to create his own brand of dates. One only wishes such #ToughHardum stories are told better and reach more people.

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