If You’re Having as Much Fun on Vacation as the Kid in This Ad, You’re Doing It Right

U.K. travel agency wants to help

When you book your vacation through Thomas Cook, it'll be so good that you'll be dancing like a madman. That, at least, is the premise of a new ad by Albion London for the U.K. travel agency.

The commercial opens on a quiet hotel pool, before a young hero makes his very loud entrance. Wearing only his swim trunks and a strapped-on shark fin, he grooves his way around the water, pausing only to see if the lifeguard is going to scold him. (After a friendly, totally irresponsible smile, he resumes.)

Thomas Cook credits the soundtrack, which is integral to the ad's success, to one Tam Cooper. The general idea, from the kid's performance to his aesthetic, knacks pretty strongly of Napoleon Dynamite, which is a bit tired.

But the setting, and his age, keep it fresh enough, while the simplicity and focus of the idea is charming enough to make a nice change of pace from the usual travel fare—even if, at a minute long, it could still stand to be a little shorter.

The tagline, "Be Bold," falls flat—it's too broad to offer any clear attachment to the brand or its services. But the general takeaway is clear enough. On the one hand, the ad is playing specifically to families—namely, mothers who want their kids to have fun on vacation. More broadly, it appeals to everyone's inner child. That's wise, because everyone wishes they could cut loose, but Mom knows she's going to end up chasing around Junior around the deck the entire time, anyway.

If this were a Danish travel campaign, though, that'd be just one of many moments she'd be cursing her own mother, for funding that last trip some 10 years ago.