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Channel 4 goes back to the 80s to promote Russell T Davies miniseries It’s A Sin

You may not be anywhere near the office water cooler right now, but we still want to spotlight the most talked about creative from the brands that should be on your radar. Today, we explore Channel 4’s 80s-themed takeover, designed to promote upcoming drama It’s A Sin.

Channel 4 is mounting an 80s revival this Friday with a big hair and shoulder pad takeover to coincide with the premiere of a new five-part drama penned by Russell T Davies, It’s a Sin.

Rewinding the decades, Channel 4 will reprise the classic Lambie-Nairn station ident for the duration, together with a host of 80s themed brand elements designed to transport viewers back to the era of synthpop, the New Romantics and Thatcherism.

Over the day, continuity announcements will be made in a stiff received pronunciation accent, reinforcing several 20-second idents that will be broadcast throughout the next 24 hours.

The decadal promotion will be supported by a multimedia campaign that includes a poster campaign and social media, as well as a partnership with Acast podcasts and the Gay Times to promote the drama. The latter will also be getting into the spirit of things by dusting off its 80s brand and magazine covers for its website and social activity.

Bringing the conversation right up to the present, cast members will interview prominent figures from the LGBTQ+ community, such as activist Peter Tatchell, for their reflections on issues documented by the series.

Zaid Al-Qassab, the chief marketing officer and inclusion & diversity director for Channel 4, said: “Going back to the 80s in this collaborative campaign not only brings a sense of fun and nostalgia to the channel in a typically irreverent Channel 4 way but also demonstrates Channel 4’s commitment to championing diversity beyond our programmes while building on 4Creative’s industry-leading reputation for delivering original and creative campaigns.“

Lynsey Atkin, executive creative director at 4Creative, added: “If out of social turbulence comes creative magnitude, then the 80s was the UK’s Athena-poster-child decade. The visual legacy it left is both chaotic and brilliant, and digging through our archive has allowed us to put some of Channel 4’s most celebrated graphics back on air. Through the wider campaign, we’ve hoped to create the sense of an era that changed so much, through the lens of something that never does – the invincible spirit of youth and the promise of Saturday night.”

The timewarp creative was conceived by Channel 4, 4Creative and OMD and will honour the work of Martin Lambie-Nairn, who passed away aged 75 on Christmas Day.

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