Besides the joy that comes from seeing the deer at Richmond Park or the angst that follows avoiding one of the dog-hating geece in my local park, my encounters with wildlife in Britain has been minimal. However, one of those rare you-will-never-guess-what-I-have-seen moments was finding a hedgehog on a late night dog walk, or more correctly – my dog unearthed this living prickly ball as it hastily scuttled under a car. As such, I have always had a fascination for hedgehogs, helped perhaps by fond memories of the old hedgehog “look, listen and cross” road adverts. Consequently, discovering an advert that featured a mass of hedgehogs plus a road was just too much to hide away. So here it is-
The advert is by the French Agence V for Volkswagen. Wonderfully crafted in ultra realistic CG (by the folks at Akama), the ad premiers in France but will be released throughout Europe and in 3D cinemas as of November 30th.
So what about it gets me so spiked (sorry)?
Firstly, I love the narrative, the whole Disney effect of the whole piece of the hedgehogs coming together, attempting to survive the danger of the road.
Secondly, I admire its randomness – hedgehogs and cars initially seeming a strange combination, but then actually working as the USP of Volkswagen, its stability and control features become evident. I love how it builds up to this – a wtf thought transforming to that “aha!” moment, in addition to relief as thankfully this is not your average car ad (no dust tracks in sight).
Finally, it achieves that tricky combination of funny and cute at the same time – ingeniously pressing all those emotional, subconscious buttons that make people remember and also want to buy.