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Ad of the Day: Freeview alien Queen cracks open the ‘good biscuits’

Freeview has joined forces with creative agency Anomaly to bring two lovable alien characters to TV screens to showcase how to access its array of channels.

The UK's sole digital terrestrial television platform is in 18m homes but with this campaign it looks to remind the public just how useful it can be. ‘Crack Open the Good Biscuits’ sees an extra-terrestrial queen and her long-suffering aide Colin (puppets naturally) on the brink of invading Earth when they are stopped in their celestial tracks by picking up some Freeview channels on their spacecraft's telly.

The dynamic duo hilariously try to decipher what’s going on in the ‘human’ shows. They conclude that The Great British Bake Off’s Paul Hollywood kneading dough is indeed him defeating some kind of monster and that the Love Island contestants are participating in strange mating rituals – analyses that wouldn’t necessarily be inaccurate.

“Packed with some of the best TV ever made, all available to watch for free – it’s no wonder these aliens can’t get enough,” said Neema Shah, head of marketing at Freeview.

“It’s been a pleasure to watch this ad come to life; not only does it give us some much-needed comic relief, but we think it really captures the strength of our live and on-demand shows, alongside the accessibility of the platform, which work together to make the service out of this world.”

Created by Anomaly and brought to life by the puppeteering masters at Blinkink Productions, the Queen and Colin went through multiple stages to bring them to life – clay maquettes, hand puppets, 3D digital sculpts and finally remote-controlled animatronic faces with fabricated bodies and tailor-made costumes.

“We worked with the best talent in the industry to guarantee our aliens feel like they leapt out of a Hollywood blockbuster, with the whole ad framed by the quintessential British humor that perfectly reflects Freeview’s spirit,” added Jonny Sabbagh and Will Harper, directors at Blinkink.

“I think most of us grew up making monsters and playing with spaceships, so this has been a dream job.”

Leveraging some comic relief was key for the team behind the campaign, and award-winning actors Samantha Spiro (Sex Education, Ridley Road) and Jamie Demetriou (Stath Lets Flats, Fleabag) were cast to voice the characters, bringing some quintessential British humor on board.

“Freeview is brilliant really, isn’t it? The best shows in the world, whenever you like. There are loads to see (channel 33, that’s all I’m saying), and it’s all just given away for free. If aliens arrived tomorrow, they’d pity us for this stupidity, but then enjoy it anyway. And that’s exactly what our aliens – brought to life by the brilliant Johnny and Will and Blinkink Productions – do,” said Joe Corcoran, executive creative director at Anomaly.

The video premiered during The Great British Bake Off last night.

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