Best Ad of 2016 That You’ve Never Seen? It’s Japan’s Weird, Wonderful ‘Firefly Man’

Don't even try to guess where this plot is going

A man who can't keep the lights on for his family leaves home on a five-year quest, and returns as a human firefly who lights up his entire village. 

That is the bizarre, ultimately tragic plot of this "Firefly Man" ad for Ocedel Lighting in Japan. It won a silver in Film and a bronze in Film Craft last week at Cannes Lions, and before that, it was the Grande Film winner at this year's Asia Pacific AdFest.

The spot, made by Drill Tokyo, is also a far more coherent story than any Marvel Cinematic Universe film we've seen to date. 

The ending isn't entirely clear, though. Is he dead, or did his butt bulb just burn out?

Still, it says a lot that you don't even need the subtitles to understand this is an ad for LED lights (a much simpler solution than becoming a superbug). This is just a nitpick, but we would also have tweaked the lighting so it didn't look like one of Nolan's Batman films. 

But overall, it's great, setting up Ocedel's lighting solutions as a reasonable alternative to the wackiness portrayed here. David Kiefaber is a frequent contributor to Adweek's creativity blog, AdFreak.