Before anyone could really prepare, the pandemic arrived and upended life as we knew it. After 12 long months living in ‘Confusing Times’, Burger King has wonderfully imagined the state of mind felt by many as they try to re-enter ‘normal’ life after this unprecedented captivity.
Created by David Madrid, the Impossible Whopper ads first appeared in radio form back in March. “It’s all so confusing nowadays,” boomed the deep voice of a man who starts verbalizing people’s anxieties. “Terrence knows that shaking hands is not OK. But bumping elbows is. Terrence also knows that he should sneeze into his elbow, no Terrence is confused.”
The darkly funny radio ads that could be mistaken for a public service announcement have now been brought to life in live-action. “Joe wonders if this is working from home, or living at work?” it begins, as a man dressed in boxers and a shirt searches through his fridge while working from a meeting using a headset.
The ad then flicks through various people who are dealing with these ‘confusing times’, like Emma who has discovered she likes dating Mark’s profile more than she likes dating Mark, or Jason who has stumbled into a real-life conversation but struggles to communicate because he can’t mute, turn off his camera or pee while he listens.
“These are confusing times,” ends the ad. “Which is just about the right time to have the Burger King Impossible Whopper. A Whopper made without beef that tastes just like... a Whopper.” The ultimate message: the most confusing thing about these confusing times is Burger King’s vegan burger.
‘Confusing Times’ joins a long list of work that Burger King has created during the pandemic. In November, it asked burger fans to ‘order from McDonald’s’ to highlight the need to support food outlets struggling at the hands of the pandemic.
While in June, it launched the ‘Lockdown Whopper‘. At the time, Brazil was having a hard time getting people to stay home at the beginning of the pandemic, and the president wasn‘t necessarily leading by example.
So it decided to gamify the lockdown. By using the geolocation feature in the BK app, the brand allowed users to earn meal rewards for staying home, receiving better deals the longer they stayed in.
Earlier this month, the tenure of its famous chief marketing officer Fernando Machado came to an abrupt end. He first joined the company as head of brand marketing in March 2014.