02 September 2008

Anti-obesity campaigns: abducted by manatees

Boomerang Media is the company that produces, among other things, those postcard racks that you find in bars and cinemas. I went to see Get Smart the other day and this postcard caught my eye:



Rob Adderley is the designer.

I did a little digging and, despite the fact that Boomerang are not returning my calls, I found out that the company had a competition inviting advertisers to design an awareness campaign to tackle obesity. There were 12 winning designs, I'd love to see the others, of which the manatee is one. The back says: "…but seriously, think of the future."

"Tackling obesity" is an expression that usually raises a smirk, but I have to say that this card really puzzles me. I'm assuming that the brief was all about obesity prevention, but this lovely, playful image reads like an ad for obesity. The little fatty in the picture looks perfectly happy to frolic amidst the manatees. Hell, I'd be happy if manatees kidnapped me too, I can't think of anything nicer than bobbing around in warm shallows eating stray bits of vegetation with these lovely gentle creatures.

This isn't the first time that allegedly anti-obesity advertising has backfired. The Obesity Monster is supposed to scare us skinny but, as my friend E says: "look at his lovely little hands and his growly wittle face!"

5 comments:

Whatnot said...

That drawing is undeniably cute, and also looks particularly suggestive, in a kinky way.

Charlotte Cooper said...

@whatnot

I think the person is supposed to be a kid, but it's ambiguous.

Joshly said...

This drawing is unbelievably cute,but it is supposed to be a kid...........

Amy said...

I totally want to swim with the manatees, if that's what it looks like! I also want to eat the Obesity Monster, or whatever his name is...

Yeah, these ads are not working. Good! :-)

purplegirl said...

These are hilariously awesome. I'd totally wear the manatee shirt. And the obesity monster? Squee! ;)