big bad wolf

the whole picture

If you’ve been online recently you’ll have seen, or at least heard about, the latest Guardian ad.  The premise is simple but the result is incredible.  An old age fairytale, the three little pigs, is modernised to fit in with the new media age. Our three porcine protagonists are dragged by the curlies into the twentieth century in what makes for a bizarrely realistic story.

The ad has so many layers that I could probably go on forever.  The story twists and turns across the media platforms used by the Guardian in a way that you wouldn’t expect.  The end result is spectacular all at once serious and humourous.  My particular favourite moment is the ‘keep up your chinny chin chins’ comment which punctuates would could otherwise be a fairly heavy handed approach.

It’s fair to say that this will hang around in my ‘top ads’ list for some time.  It’s just such a strong piece of communications that it’s hard to ignore.  The concept and production are astonishing.  The balance between the surreal and the realistic is incredible.  In short, it’s (almost) flawless: clever and knowing but never smug.

Another clever twist is that this is an update of a previous Guardian ad.  The original ‘the whole picture’ ad featured a similarly simple concept.  Just as the latest ad tells a story from a multimedia angle (or rather, multimedia angles) the original told an event through various angles.  Sure, it’s much more rudimentary, in every sense, but it still makes for a great ad.  Shame it’s going to have to be shunted (from the list mentioned above) for the new little piggies.