Periscope and James Harden Keep Things Weird in New Trolli Campaign

By Erik Oster 

Periscope continues its oddball approach for candy brand Trolli in a series of three “Winning at Hoops” spots starring Houston Rockets shooting guard James Harden.

The spots are a play on eighties sports instructional videos, with retro graphics to match.

Harden is joined by a coach who explains to viewers the shots he will demonstrate, including a “Lay-Up,” “Slam Dunk” and “Hook Shot.” After an introduction from the coach (who appears to be doing his best Chris Farley impression), Harden gives a simple demonstration of the shot in question. Upon closer inspection by way of slo-mo instant replay, however, Harden manages to feed himself Trolli Sour Brite Crawlers in the process.


He does this via a secret compartment in the ball, a tiny hand coming out of nowhere or, in “Dunk,” by rapidly growing his beard.

This is, of course, the kind of weirdness we’ve come to expect out of the independent Minneapolis agency’s work for the brand.

If anything, the strangeness is (slightly) toned down this time around, at least in comparison to the Periscope’s previous work such as last year’s campaign promoting Trolli’s Sour Brite Crawler Minis and Extreme Sour Bites. Instead, there’s a big focus on the retro feel of the spots, which were directed by SOCIETY’s David Viau. If we didn’t know what to expect from the agency, that faux-retro setup may have left us surprised by the strange twist of Harden pulling gummy worms seemingly out of nowhere … but then, we did know what to expect.

Client: Trolli
Agency: Periscope
Production Company: SOCIETY
Director: David Viau
Executive Producer: Harry Calbom
Head of Production: Rebecca Parenteau
Director of Photography: Doug Hostetter
Producer: Jill McBride
Post Production: SOCIETY
VFX: David Viau
Editor: Victoria Mortati
Producer: David Guti Rosado
Music & Sound: PICO Music+Sound
Executive Producer: Ellis Hawes
Composers: Lucas Field, Emeen Zarookian, Lucas Field, Jeff Kite
Mix/SFX: Jamie Hunsdale