Mullen Opts for Hyperbole to Reassert Ad Council’s Drunk Driving Message

By Kiran Aditham 

With the holidays come the spate of ads about the dangers of drunk driving. Opting for some bombast instead of the usual images of swerving drivers getting pulled over by the po-po, Mullen unveiled its new PSAs as part of the Ad Council and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s ongoing “Buzzed Driving is Drunk Driving” campaign. Hyperbole abounds in the spot above called “Save a Life”, which features a gal who thanks to some video editing gets high praise from folks like the Pope and the Dalai Lama for choosing not to drive home buzzed.

Unlike say Australia, which basically tries to scare the shit out of you in order to emphasize safe driving, Mullen ECD Mark Wenneker says these ads try to celebrate those who don’t booze and cruise. “While traditionally the message has been to frighten and shun the drunk driver, we thought we’d try something a bit more optimistic,” he says in a statement. “Ultimately the decision not to drive drunk or buzzed is gigantic. Maybe not gigantic enough to deserve a handshake from the Pope or have a ship named after you. Unless, of course, you’re the family who didn’t get killed that night. They may beg to differ.”

More: “Ad Council PSA’s Message: Look Ma, All Hands!