DraftKings Summons a Daft Doctor to Cure What Ails Fantasy-Football Fans

Make an appointment with Dr. Aftkings

If you’re suffering from silly-sounding, made-up ailments related to fantasy sports, the DraftKings doctor will see you now.

That’s Dr. Aftkings (see what they did there!?), who stars in a series of ads from Deutsch that began rolling out last week. In the spot below, the doofy doc dispenses a daffy diagnosis to a distraught dude suffering from lamentably low fantasy-football earnings:

Are we sure that guy went to medical school?

“These spots use humor to connect to our young, male demo and make our educational messaging more entertaining,” Don Lane, senior vp of brand and creative at DraftKings, tells AdFreak. (This is the client’s first work under Lane, formerly a long-time executive at Arnold Worldwide, where his tenure overlapped for many years with that of current Deutsch North America creative leader Pete Favat.)

Dr. Aftkings’ prescription stays pretty much the same in other ads that deal with maladies like “Draftitis,” “Loseonic Plague” and, um, “Winnerhea.”

“For fantasy-football players, season-long leagues just don’t have enough action,” explains Deutsch New York creative chief Dan Kelleher. “There’s only one draft, one game a week, that’s it. We realized this fantasy deficiency was leading to symptoms of depression and apathy across a wide range of players. Lucky for them, we had the cure”—that would be Dr. Aftkings—”the only man who can treat players suffering from fantasy withdrawals, and keep them playing all season long.”

The deadpan/bedpan central performance by actor Vyto Ruginis and director Wayne McClammy‘s deft comic touch elevate the material, though you’d think medical science or creative directors would have eradicated the doltish-disease trope by now.

Still, while Dr. Aftkings’ schtick may not constitute a breakthrough, his antics are diverting and on-brand. So, Hippocratically speaking, at least he does no harm.

DraftKings is also launching a separate series of “Play” spots (see below), which consist mainly of monochrome slow-mo game footage and big-ass text—”A week one win can be huge!”—flashing on screen. Dr. Aftkings doesn’t appear in those. Maybe he was on the links that day (talk about tired tropes!), or summoned to appear before the state medical board.

CREDITS
Client: DraftKings
Agency: Deutsch

—DraftKings “Dr. Aftkings” Campaign

Deutsch Office: New York
Chief Creative Officer, North America – Pete Favat
Chief Creative Officer, New York – Dan Kelleher
Executive Creative Director – Pete Johnson
Art Director – Krish Karunanidhi
Copywriter – Justin Lee, Jim LeMaitre, Jonathan Mackler
Director of Integrated Production – Joe Calabrese
Executive Producer – Shane Smith
Director of Integrated Business Affairs – Maria Taris
Group Director, Integrated Business Affairs – Stacy Schwartz
Head of Digital Strategy & Invention – Rachel Mercer
Sr. Strategist – Sidney Henne
Sr. Strategist, Digital – Rachel Gruber
Project Manager – Sean Gilleylen
Account Director – Andrew Arnot
Account Supervisor – Emily Doll
Account Executive – Mina Mukherjee

Client, Client Contact:
SVP, Brand & Creative – Don Lane
VP, Brand & Sports Marketing – Michael Shonkoff
Creative Director – Scott Salsbury
Director of Design – Thibault Kim
Senior Marketing Acquisition Associate – Ethan Shibutani
Strategic Partnerships – Gregory Sbardella
Marketing Specialist – Rob Hanson
Senior Manager – Josh Levin-Scherz

Production Company: Hungry Man
Director – Wayne McClammy
Executive Producer – Mino Jarjoura
Line Producer – Dave Bernstein
Director of Photography – Bryan Newman

Editorial: Cutting Room
Editor – Chuck Willis
Managing Partner – Susan Willis
Executive Producer – Anna Petitti

Telecine: Company 3
Senior Colorist – Tim Masick

Visual Effects: Light of Day
Creative Director/Partner – Colin Stackpole
Flame Artist – Pete DeAndrea

Music/Licensed Music Tracks: Extreme Music
Track – XCD070_01 SUPERBAD

Audio Post: Duotone
Executive Producer – Greg Tiefenbrun
Audio Engineer – Andy Green

End Tag Animation/Graphics Company: Light of Day
Creative Director/Partner – Colin Stackpole
Flame Artist – Pete DeAndrea

—DraftKings “Play” Campaign

Deutsch Office: New York
Chief Creative Officer, North America – Pete Favat
Chief Creative Officer, NY – Dan Kelleher
Director of Integrated Production – Joe Calabrese
Director of Print and Art Production – Sarah Manna
Executive Print Producer – Jeanette Luis
Print Producer – Melissa Betancur
Associate Producer – Marieme Sall
Executive Creative Director – Pete Johnson
Creative Director, Art – Marques Gartrell
Creative Director, Copy – Heather English
Art Director – Krishnan Karunanidhi
Director of Integrated Business Affairs – Maria Taris
Group Director, Integrated Business Affairs – Stacy Schwartz
Head of Digital Strategy & Invention – Rachel Mercer
Sr. Strategist – Sidney Henne
Sr. Strategist, Digital – Rachel Gruber
Director of Project Management – Clara Kim
Account Director – Andrew Arnot
Account Supervisor – Emily Doll
Account Executive – Mina Mukherjee

Client, Client Contact:
SVP, Brand & Creative – Don Lane
VP, Brand & Sports Marketing – Michael Shonkoff
Creative Director – Scott Salsbury
Director of Design – Thibault Kim
Senior Marketing Acquisition Associate – Ethan Shibutani
Strategic Partnerships – Gregory Sbardella
Marketing Specialist – Rob Hanson
Senior Manager – Josh Levin-Scherz

Production Company:
Gentleman Scholar
Directors – William Campbell & Will Johnson
Creative Directors – William Campbell, Will Johnson, Chace Hartman
Executive Producer – Christina Roldan
Head of Prodution: Rachel Kaminek
Line Producer – Robert Morales
Director of Photography – Claudio Miranda
Production Designer: Peter Kirkegaard
Art Director – Trish Janovic
CG Supervisor – Adam Burke
Producer – Gregory Behrens
Designers – Chris Finn, Macauley Johnson, Cam Floyd, Hana No, Hana Eunjin Sean, Andy Lyon, Leah Evans, Vin Kim, Christina Liang, Juna Kwon, Juan Carlos Cuadra
2D Animators – Jaewoo Park, Juan Monasterio
Compositors – Joseph Brigati, Ari Reisner, Victor Torres, Kristjan Zaklynsky
Flame Artists – Kieran Walsh, Jamie Scott
Storyboards – Iain Slack

Riad Represents
Photographer – Thierry des Fontaines
Line Producer – Adele Thomas
Digital Tech – Alexander Quel
First Assistant – Wayne Hoecherl
Second Assistant – Mackenzie Walker

Editorial:
Whitehouse Post
Executive Producer – Caitlin Grady
Editor – James Dierx
Assistant Editor – Sam Omenn

Steelhead
Executive Producer – Jeff Morgan
Senior Motion Designer/Editor – Juan Guzman
Editor – Matt Mullen
Motion Designer – Yui Uchida
Post Producer – Samantha Addy

Telecine:
Carbon VFX
Senior Producer – Paul O’Beirne
Colorist – Milan Boncich

Music/Licensed Music Tracks:
Original Music and Sound Design by Human World Wide
“Week to Week”
Composer(s) – Matthew O’Malley & Thomas Keery
“Leagues”
Composer(s) – Jon Collins & Thomas Keery
“Perfect Lineup”
Composer(s) – Michael MacAllister & Thomas Keery
“Winning”
Composer(s): Andrew Bloch & Thomas Keery

Audio Post:
Post Human
Executive Producer – James Wells
Senior/Post Producer – Craig Caniglia
Creative Lead/Sound Design – Mike Jurasits
Post Engineer – Albert Leusink
Assistant Post Engineer – Robert Suchecki