Ad of the Day: BBC tackles ‘square eyes’ fear among parents in stop-motion film
The 60-second animation explores the positive benefits of its content for kids.
It’s a fear as old as the cathode ray tube: children who spend too long in front of the TV will end up with ‘square eyes’.
According to a nationwide survey commissioned by BBC Children’s and Education, almost 80% of parents think their kids have been using TV, iPads, phones or computers more than before the pandemic. And 67% are worried about what they’re watching.
To dispel that concern, the BBC has released a charming animated film emphasizing that what counts is the quality of the content on a screen, not the quantity of hours spent with it.
‘The Square Eyed Boy’ is a 60-second stop-motion film made for BBC Creative by animation studio Blinkink and Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared director Sam Gainsborough which follows a diminutive hero who’s found himself with square eyes.
The spot explores how his friends, and the people around him, shun the boy because they assume he’s been watching too much trash telly. But, the story shows him using BBC Bitesize, nature documentaries, sports and arts content that encourages him to explore the world away from a screen.
In the narrator’s words: “Maybe you don’t get square eyes, but can actually become well-rounded.”
The film is the first element of a new campaign which will also roll out across out-of-home and social to continue the debate.
Director: Justin Bairamian
Head of planning: Mike Lean
Head of production: James Wood
Executive creative director: Rasmus Smith Bech
Creative directors: Mark Slack, Becca Pottinger
Creative: Shannon Cripps
Creative: Beth Wood
Senior producer: Rachel Roberts
Project manager: Phoebe Brewer
Senior planner: Kris Jalowiecki
Production manager: Polly Georgieva
Production coordinator: Hannah Stothard
Researcher: Edward Hobson
Senior designers: Walter Hutton, Veronica Law, Darren Wagstaff
Motion designers: Charlotte Temple, Sin Yee Hau
Director: Jane Callingham
Head of marketing: Sarah Owen
Marketing managers: Leanne Johnson, Helen Alder
Marketing executive: Nicola Martindale
Media portfolio lead: Emma Lucas
Campaign planner: Sam Hartford
Director: Sam Gainsborough
Producer: Rebecca Little
Head of production: Alex Halley
Executive producer: Bart Yates
Production manager: Molly Turner
Director of photography: Ronnie McQuillan
Gaffer: Aldo Camilleri
Paint on glass animators: Renee Zhan, Marta Szymanska
Stop motion animators: Andy Biddle, Tobias Fouracre
Head of model making: Sam Holland
Art director: Gordon Allen
VFX supervisor & lead compositor: Stephen McNally