In a loopy but memorable attempt to symbolize the sweetness of its biscuits and tea-cakes, McVitie's new British TV campaign shows cute, cuddly critters emerging from its snack packages.
Ordinary folks open their boxes and out pop puppies, kittens and, most disconcertingly, a wide-eyed, Yoda-like primate called a tarsier. (They're getting pretty lax down at the packaging plant, I guess.)
The snackers, unfazed, snuggle with their new furry friends, which vanish once the biscuit-munching begins. Oh, and classic TV themes—from Murder She Wrote, Fawlty Towers and the U.K. game show Blockbuster—play in the background, naturally.
The presence of twins in one spot and a hospital setting in another intensify the self-consciously weird vibe that agency Grey London was shooting for. Even so, director Owen Trevor does a fine job treading the line between "Sweeet" (the campaign's tagline) and "Creeepy" by making the spots feel more random than unnerving.
"We loved the idea that one word could encompass everything these biscuits might mean, but that each biscuit would have a different kind of Sweeet," Grey ecd Nils Leonard tells AdFreak. "We also wanted a cinematic way to evoke the feeling of McVitie's. A way to create unique experiences that brought to life the different feelings each of the biscuits creates. Nailing the essence of each biscuit was critical, so we ate loads of them to help the creative process."
What's more, "We sweated every element of this work to create conversation and appeal to our audience." (And hopefully sweated off some of those many biscuits they ate)
The offbeat approach is designed to speed social sharing and sweeten the campaign's shelf life, even if some viewers sour on all that saccharine. "I just fainted from sweetness overload," notes one YouTube viewer, while another confused viewer asks, "McVitie's Digestives taste like live dog?"