Yes, we have no bananas.

September 4, 2007

No message. It just makes you smile as if you were eating a bar of sugar chocolate.

For some (accessibility?) reason, they published the transcript. So I added a line. It makes it feel more like Phil had some involvement in the ethos of the project.

We open on purple recording studio wall.
A title appears: A Glass and a Half Full Production.
We start listening to the first sounds of ‘In The Air Tonight’ by Phil Collins.

The camera slowly pans down as we hear the keyboard’s atmospheric intro. When we start listening to the first lyrics we spot a hairy thing in the edge of the frame. As the camera keeps panning, the mysterious figure gets revealed.

We realize that in front of us is a gorilla.It looks calmly to camera. Phil continues singing: ‘I can feel it coming in the air tonight.’

The massive Gorilla stares at us – concentrated.
We are almost sure that he knows we are filming him, but his eyes look through and beyond the lens. ‘I’ve been waiting for this moment for all of my life.’

The gorilla focuses back on the camera. All we see is neck and head . And hair. A fax machine delivers the message “Yes, we have no bananas.”

The camera gently zooms out revealing the Gorilla’s surroundings. We see more of the studio.
And we discover a series of metallic things around him.

We realize that the Gorilla is sitting in front of a massive drum kit. One of those Eighties big kits with loads of things to hit. Loads of tom-toms, hi-hats, double bass drum, etc.

We know that the best drum solo in the whole history of rock – ever – is coming. The Gorilla knows it too.

The Gorilla hits the drums with passion and vigour. Elegance meets power. He’s phenomenal on the drums – feeling every beat.
The camera leaves the ape and his drum kit in the studio.
The screen fades to purple. We see a Cadbury Dairy Milk bar of chocolate appear above the words ‘A Glass and a half full of Joy’

Did you spot it? Did you get the facts?

If Cadburys say: ‘Well it just seemed like the right thing to do. There’s no clever science behind it – it’s just an effort to make you smile, in exactly the same way Cadbury Dairy Milk does.’ then I couldn’t possibly recall my own facts about Phil the Drummer, could I? Nor could I remember Tarzan or any other jungle inhabitants. But they seems to be promising more of the same ‘association’ promos.

I’m evidently thinking about this too much, but I like the desire to make media that fills curiosity time. And curious time is about connecting facts together.

UPDATE (07-Oct-07): I’ve just seen the 5sec version in the Channel4 adbreak of Alien (Movie). 5sec! Ok, this is clear media spend.

Like W+K’s ‘Happiness factory’ work for Coca Cola. (Full respect to team Psyop too. Check out their anthem.)

But there’s something better. This..

But then, as I write this, I spot this…

Oh dear.

The opportunity in advertising, perhaps it’s saviour, is semantic binding. Loose associations that couple with other miscellaneous facts. I’ve been calling this ‘Stateless Marketing’, based upon RESTful services.

Much of my thinking on this, which I might get around to writing about here, is based upon ‘media as a platform’, the relationship between emotions and (social/software) functions and being able to model them for reuse. When you do this, the value is in the act of connectivity, not it’s duration, recall (memory state), proposition, knowledge transfer. If anything, a ROI model becomes the ‘frequency of the connectivity’. Wikipedia does over approximately 1m page serves a minute. Put that in your CPM pipe and smoke it.

When I see (superb) adverts such as Gorilla and Happiness Factory, I see the dynamics of ‘meaning’ dissolve in favour of connectivity that serves a moment of pleasure. Sequencing these, or rather, enabling the viewer-person-user-actor-punter to sequence them together would be ultimately orgasmic.

Media, participatory or not, has to be designed to fit into the overall seduction of the public. It’s a big audience, and you cant please all the people all of the time, but happiness is infectious and envy is a meal best served as humour.

I think there is a lot to be said for inappropiate behaviour. Yeah, the blog post is coming…

5 Responses to “Yes, we have no bananas.”

  1. Will Says:

    “The opportunity in advertising, perhaps it’s saviour, is semantic binding. Loose associations that couple with other miscellaneous facts. I’ve been calling this ‘Stateless Marketing’, based upon RESTful services.”

    Semantic binding/Stateless Marketing.. I like it. May possibly be stolen. I’m curious how you think the ad would have work if Cadbury’s wasn’t so imbedded in people’s minds/a product which doesn’t need much explaining/number one in the marketplace.

    Much as I hate to say it, Cadbury’s Gorilla – the ultimate example of PoMo advertising. Sigh..


  2. Stolen!?! Take that back young man. I’m a genius. Really I am.

    The ad wouldn’t have worked if Cadbury’s or the classic Milk Tray secret agent ads hadn’t existed. Or if the Cadbury salmonella horror never happened.

    The ad is a superficial distraction from the contamination of the chocolate – how else do you restructure the brand? Start with core product and re-abstract the values. And add Phil Collins.

    Too easy to use Post Modernism as a clause. It doesn’t exist anyway!


  3. [...] which they publish on behalf of their patrons – more like an artist’s practice (’semantic binding‘) than busywork agencies [...]


  4. [...] Zero influence – Yes, we have no bananas. Clever clever: “The opportunity in advertising, perhaps it’s saviour, is semantic binding. Loose associations that couple with other miscellaneous facts. I’ve been calling this ‘Stateless Marketing’, based upon RESTful services.” (tags: advertising semiotics semantic readerlywriterly marketing stateless rest api media usevaluevssignvalue simulacra baudrillard hypertext cyberpsychology endogenous exogenous) [...]


  5. [...] think about the mentality of design that encourages Stateless Communications, and then remember the Gorilla Advert. Think how utility can become fun – fun as in learning – education through [...]


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