Empty Wheelchair Chases People Around a Mall in One of the Meanest Ad Pranks Yet

FCB Health's PSA about osteoporosis

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Hand out fliers about the dangers of osteoporosis pretty much anywhere and see what happens. Crumple. Toss. No one reads all those statistics. But chase those same folks with a remote-controlled wheelchair? Now you have yourself a public service campaign.

Never mind that it could spike some heart rates—why is that contraption following me?—it's for the greater good.

The prank-style awareness campaign, from FCB Health, shares some fairly alarming data: About 54 million Americans have osteoporosis or low bone density, and one in two women over age 50 will break a bone due to osteoporosis. Recovery can be brutal, or nonexistent—hence the wheelchair as the central prop.

With slightly more ominous background music, "Beware the Chair" could double as an ad for a horror flick. (Put a creepy baby in it, and you have a Thinkmodo production.) Initial reaction seems to be pretty strong, judging from the video. Or maybe those people were already trembling?

The work will get print, outdoor and heavy social media distribution via Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube. FCB is also offering it free to hospitals and healthcare groups across the country.


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@TLStanleyLA tlstanley8@yahoo.com T.L. Stanley is a senior editor at Adweek, where she specializes in consumer trends, cannabis marketing, meat alternatives, pop culture, challenger brands and creativity.