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2020 hasn’t given us many reasons to be happy. So when something comes along that makes you want to bare your ivories with confidence, you can’t help but… smile.

In a brand new TVC that dropped earlier this month, a young woman in a packed bus requests two men to vacate a seat that’s reserved for women. The men rudely refuse saying they can’t see any such sign in the dimly lit bus. Two young men sitting a couple of rows ahead pop some chewing gum and then shine their radiant smiles on the ‘Ladies Only’ sign, shaming the two men to not just vacate those seats, but the bus as well. The commercial ends with the entire bus shining their brightest, whitest, blinding smiles at the errant men.

Unless you were living under a rock a decade back, you just can’t mistake this for anything but a Happydent ad. In a return to their roots, the brand once again uses white light to bring home their key brand message of the brightest, whitest smiles. And we love this return to form for a bunch of reasons…

Some ideas are simply timeless…

One of Happydent’s earliest TVCs featured a bunch of young men lighting up an entire palace with their smiles, and it broke the mould with an idea so simple and so desi, that we couldn’t stop raving about it. That the TVC went on to win a slew of global awards, including a silver and bronze Lion at the 2007 Cannes International Advertising Festival just reinforced the fact that there was something special about that campaign. It comes as no surprise then, that the man behind these legendary ads is none other than Prasoon Joshi, fêted advertising creative mind and prolific songwriter. The new TVC takes all the trappings of a more current situation while sticking to the core idea.

Old is gold, but sometimes we love new gold too

Over a decade ago, Joshi used the idea of the human light bulb in ingenious ways, and this latest one is no different at its core. One encounters something that’s completely new in most respects, yet so familiar in the few that matter. You’re transported back to simpler times, and with it comes a warm, fuzzy feeling that can only be described as nostalgia. Given what 2020’s been like for most of us, a strong dose of nostalgia is just what the doctor ordered to warm the cockles of the heart and bring on a few smiles.

We love a good song

An essential ingredient in all of Happydent’s ads has been the quirky, yet catchy tunes that would get you hooked and singing along. The pure, unabashed ‘desiness’ of every jingle they’ve given us in the past is an integral part of what makes these ads so close to our hearts. The new jingle doesn’t disappoint either. If anything, it’s a huge clutter breaker amongst the stylised, synth-heavy fare that modern day advertising seems to hinge heavily upon. And these lyrics are gold:

Laaton ke bhoot jab kabu na aayen

Thodi si light maaro sacchi si

O dikha battisi

Kar baat achhi si…

Do-good, and do it with a smile

Happydent’s advertising has always been quirky, but the added layer of social messaging this time around makes it even more relevant in these trying times. It takes some ability to send out a do-good message without being preachy, but to hammer home that message with humour needs real skill. That Happydent has decided to shine its bright, white lights on people being considerate to other people is a massive win in our books. 

This, for us is 2020’s version of a jaadu ki jhappi, and god knows we’ve needed one. Badly.

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