As Gareth remarks on brand new, the follow up to the Cadbury’s Gorilla advert is underwhelming.
We all spent ages trying to work out if and why the Gorilla worked. The sales figures would seem to suggest it did work (outside of adland) although not in a big way. No one really seems to really know whether it sold more chocolate bars or Phil Collins records.
Clearly that ad made people think. The problem is, did it make them think, ‘I want to buy some chocolate’ or just ‘cute gorilla’?
The new ad has so many faults, I wonder how it got through:
- The trucks aren’t just being naughty, they’re being destructive. That tone doesn’t seem to fit. The great thing about the Gorilla was a feeling about a slightly guilty but harmless pleasure
- There’s an apparently deliberate ambiguity about whether the vehicles are real, or toys. That’s ruined when we see a driver in one of the cabs
- Again the dark, helmeted driver seems at logger-heads with the idea of innocent pleasure: what are the motivations of these shady characters?
- It just doesn’t seem like a lot of pleasure.
- Clearly the timing (the same weekend as the T5 baggage fiasco), could work both ways for the brand, but if anything it seems to add the recklessness feeling and send the mind wandering away from chocolate bars.
So the clever subtlety and counterpoint of a very human gorilla acting like a teenager in their bedroom with a dark secret about Phil Collins, gives way to a kind of big boy’s slightly destructive fantasy which seems to fit all the most irrelevant parts of the brief.