Commercials are often funny — humor sells — and sometimes they’re designed to scare you. Into buying a product, that is. Or quitting smoking. Or not drinking and driving. But it’s pretty rare to see a commercial that’s both scary and funny at the same time.
This award-winning ad is definitely both. This TV spot is three years old, but it was produced in Germany and that’s where it ran. Presumably, advertisers might worry that the content of this ad, by German producers Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg, is a bit too much for sensitive American audiences. After all, most advertisers don’t want to be associated with demonic possession, and this horror-themed ad takes off on the premise of the classic 1973 horror flick The Exorcist.
Even if you’ve never seen the movie, however, you’ll get the joke of this ad — because by the end, it suddenly shifts from scary to funny. We don’t want to tell you which product is being advertised here because if you know, you’ll be able to guess the ending and the joke won’t work.
We’re certainly not endorsing the product — or saying anything about it one way or the other. Except that it makes a great punch line.
Here’s what the judges at the 2011 Red Dot Commercial Design Awards had to say about this instant classic spot:
“The commercial has been produced with excellent technical workmanship and has a highly professional appeal. The humorous idea is implemented through many sophisticated details in camera work, lighting and audio engineering into a dramaturgy full of suspense – a convincing work that catches the attention.”
Be sure to watch all the way through to the end. We wish American ads were this clever.