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Creative Works: 10 of the best ads of the week from Lil Nas X, Channel 4 and Calm

Lil Nas X mocks Nike in court case stunt to promote new single

At The Drum, we believe great work deserves recognition and that talented creatives should get their share of reverence for the hard work they put in. So each week we will update our hall of fame, celebrating the 10 best ads from our Creative Works section. Welcome, and don’t forget to vote for your favorite!

In partnership with Adobe Stock, The Drum’s Creative Works is a handpicked selection of our favorite work from around the globe, covering digital, OOH, print, TV and radio. Each week, The Drum selects the 10 best ads from the section. To submit work, please fill out this online form.

With not long until Tokyo 2020’s starting line, brands have been quick off the mark in the race for attention. Scoring a hattrick, Channel 4 has excelled again with the third edition of its ‘Superhumans’ Paralympics push, with a film that serves as a more gritty look at the trials and tribulations of competing at the Games.

With the approach that all news is good news in the Lil Nas X playbook, the rapper is once again using unconventional methods to promote his new single Industry Baby. After Nike tried to sue him over the ‘Satan Shoes’ controversy, he is poking fun at the palaver with a courtroom stunt.

And mental health charity Calm has teamed up with Tyson Fury on a hard-hitting film about suicide. It uses footage from the boxer’s fight against Deontay Wilde; however, the latter is removed to show Fury fighting an invisible enemy – struggles with mental health.

That’s just for starters, so please scroll down to see the best work from our Creative Works section this week. And don’t forget to vote!

Channel 4: Super. Human. by 4Creative

To be a Paralympian, there’s got to be something wrong with you. This is the premise of this year’s Channel 4 Tokyo 2020 Paralympic campaign, which serves as a more gritty look at the trials and tribulations of competing at the Games for these ‘Super. Humans.’

“We spotted an opportunity to present Paralympians in a way they hadn’t been shown before – by pointing a camera at the realities of their lives and, as with any elite athlete, the sacrifices they make in pursuit of greatness,” explains Lynsey Atkin, 4Creative’s exec creative director, on capturing the blood, sweat, sacrifices and dedication it takes.

“Whether that’s defying medical advice, missing c­­hildren’s birthdays, anxiety, repetition, getting endless blisters – collectively these choices paint a story of mental determination, not of disability.”

Vote for the work here.

Industry Baby (prelude) by Lil Nas X

Gen Z’s defining icon, at the age of 22 Lil Nas X has actively reinvented pop music with a key teaching: if you’re a musician in 2021, you may be better navigating the world of social media to make your music known than relying on being discovered by scouts at gigs or busking on street corners.

After Nike filed a high-profile trademark infringement lawsuit against Lil Nas X for modifying its Air Max 97 as ‘Satan Shoes’ (that contained real human blood), the rapper has mocked the brand as he looks to build up hype around his new single Industry Baby.

Vote for the work here.

Calm: Tyson Fury and the Invisible Opponent by AMV BBDO

Seven Stones and AMV BBDO have collaborated on a campaign for suicide prevention charity Campaign Against Living Miserably (Calm), encouraging those struggling with their mental health to open up and seek support.

The new work uses the context of sport – and heavyweight boxing champion Tyson Fury – to spark a conversation about the impact of mental health challenges, which is positioned as an invisible opponent.

Using real footage of Tyson Fury’s fight against fellow boxer Deontay Wilder from December 2018, MPC altered his opponent so that the audience only sees Fury moving around the ring, throwing and evading punches as his skin ripples with the impact of jabs. ‘Sometimes the toughest opponents are the ones you can’t see,’ ends the poignant ad.

Vote for the work here.

Pedigree: Vampire and Alien by BBDO New York

Half of the world’s dogs are homeless. That’s a lot of pooches who need forever homes. However, pet owners are more likely to buy pedigrees over adopting because they assume a dog from a shelter will have a chequered past, which affects its behavior. Less than 40% of people in the US and 30% of people in Europe actually adopt after considering shelters.

Pedigree wants to end this stigma and encourage people to rehome shelter dogs, which is why the premise of its latest campaign is: ‘Shelters are full of good dogs. They just need good homes.’

Created by BBDO New York, it uses fantasy to get the point across that it’s often the owner’s circumstances, not the dog’s behavior, that land it in a shelter.

Vote for the work here.

TfL: Welcome back. Tube it. Bus it. Train it. by VCCP

‘Welcome back. Tube it. Bus it. Train it.’ invites passengers back on board packed carriages to resume activities and visit destinations that have been out of bounds for over a year.

To mark the occasion, iconic signage roundels have been reworked to communicate the resumption of regular services with phrases such as ‘going out-out’, ‘drinks after work’ and ‘family days out’ to encourage people to again embrace old habits. This messaging will be further reinforced with station takeovers and station posters, escalator panels and screens.

Vote for the work here.

Facebook: We Change the Game When We Find Each Other by Droga5

Just four days before the official kick-off of the Tokyo Summer Olympics, Facebook has launched a global ad campaign that showcases stories of how Facebook communities and technologies have helped bring together passionate skateboarders and skateboarding fans from across the globe – and advanced the sport itself.

The films were shot over 17 days and across four continents. ‘Skate Nation Ghana’ for Facebook Company, created by a collective of four directors from Daniel Wolfe’s production company Love Song, tells the story of how Joshua Odamtten learned to skate by watching videos of Chris Cole. Odamtten eventually launched Skate Nation Ghana, a community to bring skateboarders in Ghana together.

Vote for the work here.

International Olympic Committee: What Agnes Saw

‘What Agnes Saw’ is the latest film in the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) ‘Stronger Together’ digital campaign featuring the oldest living Olympic champion, Agnes Keleti, and the youngest-ever British Olympian, skateboarding prodigy Sky Brown.

The video juxtaposes the wisdom of age with the passion of youth to offer a light in the darkness and remind people of the moments of hope and inspiration that occur when the world comes together for the Olympic Games.

Vote for the work here.

Toyota: Human Support Robot by The&Partnership

As mobility partner of Team GB and ParalympicsGB, Toyota is looking for new ways to help its athletes as they prepare for Tokyo 2020.

Featuring four Toyota ambassadors and Team GB and ParalympicsGB athletes cyclist Laura Kenny, sport climber Shauna Coxey, sprinter Jonnie Peacock and swimmer Alice Tai, the campaign has a lighthearted storyline that shows the athletes being sent a Human Support Robot (HSR) to help with their training for Tokyo 2020.

Created by The&Partnership, instead of taking advantage of the advanced robot’s full capabilities, they put it to work doing daily chores, such as walking the dog, ironing and carrying shopping.

Vote for the work here.

FCB Inferno: We Are Undefeatable by Sport England

We Are Undefeatable from FCB Inferno on Vimeo.

FCB Inferno is to repeat the success of its motivational ‘We are Undefeatable’ campaign with a fresh installment depicting how ill health need not serve as a barrier to living an active life.

Devised in conjunction with Sport England and 16 health and social care charities, the inspirational short is targeted at the 43% of people in England who live with a health condition such as Parkinson’s, illustrating how there is a sport or activity available for anyone to enjoy.

Reaching out to those managing long-term health issues, the uplifting campaign highlights the varied ways people battling major and minor health conditions can exercise, as well as the role played by friends, families and carers in enriching their lives.

Vote for the work here.

Method: Method for Change by Uncommon Creative Studio

If cleaning can look good, smell good and do good, what other little acts can create outsized change? Centered around the insight that people are looking for ways to do good for the planet and each other, Uncommon’s latest work for cleaning product brand Method aims to show that anything is possible with a little creativity and the power of community.

Set in the streets of New York, the campaign film, titled ‘Must I Evolve? Method for Change’, depicts a transformative foam party with Method at its source. Viewers are immersed in a riot of color as the foam turns a stressed city street into a joyful block party — brought about by the simple, daily act of dishwashing with Method. The energetic, dancing crowd is composed of diverse characters that reflect a true community of Method changemakers.

Vote for the work here.

That’s it for this week’s round-up of the 10 best ads from The Drum’s Creative Works. Remember to email nominations to imogen.watson@thedrum.com and to vote for your favorite ad.

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