Norway’s Pro-Gay Olympic Ad Is Cheesy and Absurd, but Also Kind of Incredible

XXL goes to 11

Headshot of Tim Nudd

Thanks to the country's anti-gay laws, the 2014 Winter Olympics in Russia have turned into a de facto platform for LGBT marketing. Earlier, we had the Canadian ad that said the two-man luge is "a little gay." Now, we have this crazy spot from Norwegian sports apparel retailer XXL.

It's an over-the-top, absurd blockbuster of an ad, with overly slick visuals, overly cheesy music and a "twist" ending you could spot from Moscow. And yet … somehow you have to love it. Its heart is generally in the right place, even if it plays out like a male fantasy. (And no, they probably wouldn't do the same ad with two men at the end.)

The ad premiered during Norway's broadcast of the Opening Ceremony last week.


Client: XXL

Agency: Schjærven Reklamebyrå

Account Director: Ole Marius Simonsen

Creatives: Jon Erik Skiælder, John Draleke

Agency Producer: Gard Andreassen

Production Company: Camp David, Stockholm

Producer: Kalle Wessblad

Directors: Bjørn Stein, Måns Mårlind

Location: Lleida Airport, Spain

Filming: Dec. 15-18, 2013

Line Producer: Dominic Bolus, Widescope Productions

Postproduction: The Chimney Pot, Stockholm

Music: Tommy Tysper

@nudd Tim Nudd is a former creative editor of Adweek.