Dumb Ways To Die

If you haven’t seen the whimsical, content-driven campaign which won the coveted Cannes Integrated Grand Prix for 2013, now is a good time to get acquainted.

This three-minute video from the Melbourne Metro hits all the right spots that make a compelling modern advertising campaign. It’s cute, the illustration is great, the subject matter is quirky and unexpected, and it’s all set to a catchy tune. It’s funny and most importantly – it has huge pass-along value. This is the sort of video you share with your friends, because it’s just so funny. Regardless of whether you live in Melbourne or not (Melbourne has about 4.5 million residents and the video has been watched 55 million times), there is something for you here, because the message is universal.

In terms of character design, this piece is flawless. Each character has the minimum amount of illustration needed and yet is instantly relatable – the mark of great character design. It’s hard not to snigger when you see these poor things die in the silliest of ways.

In fact, Dumb Ways To Die was so popular that it managed to get its own page on Know Your Meme, the online encyclopedia of Internet culture. You can check that page out here. It’s amazing to see how, when an advertising campaign is compelling and exciting, people will take it on and remix it, add their own spin and continue stoking the fires to keep it going. Gone are the days when ads were simply shown on TV and people had to sit through them. These days, people want to get involved, to remix and reinterpret. The trick is, how do you create something so interesting and exciting that people will overlook the fact that it’s an ad and actually get involved with it?

So, without further ado – Dumb Ways To Die!

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