Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen flies around on a bike through this ad while pondering what it is that makes Danes the happiest people in the world. Let's forget for a moment that Danes take a lot of psychotropic meds and anti-depressants which may have something to do with it (see OECD), and enjoy the ride. "Is that we keep work and life in perfect balance?" Mads asks as he cycles through Amalienborg Slotsplads and people rush out on the street. "Is it that we make time for hygge" he asks, thereby teaching us that very special Danish word for having a cozy time. It means exactly the same thing as the Dutch word gezellig, but both nations insist that only their language has such a word. Mads cycles through a house, saying "godaften" to a lady in bed, slams through her closet and past the Carlsberg elephants making sure to not show the swastikas on them. Inside the Carlsberg factory he samples the beer: "Or is it that we brew what we believe is the best beer in the world?" Probably.

I love how "probably" has returned and is so well used here.

Client: Carlsberg

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about the author

Dabitch Creative Director, CEO, hell-raising sweetheart and editor of Adland. Globetrotting Swede who has lived and worked in New York, London, San Francisco, Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Stockholm.

Comments (4)

  • GH's picture
    GH (not verified)

    Was the mentioning of swastikas an uneducated person's attempt at discrediting a person's heritage with having any affiliation with Nazism? Since the writer cites some form of source for other statements I believe there are honest intentions. Mentioning swastikas without explaining that they have no link to Nazism does make one wonder though...

    May 07, 2017
  • Dabitch's picture
    Dabitch

    Obviously the suncross, an ancient religious symbol, is older than Nazism and obviously, I know this and expect our readers to also know this. Carlsberg used to have this symbol etched into their bottles. I mention the swastikas on the elephants because they're so clearly blacked out in the scene when they should be visible, that it's apparent they've taken care with post and/or lighting to not show them.

    They have probably done this because this airs in the UK, and Carlsberg do not want to have to educate people about old symbols, they want to sell beer. You made the Nazi connection when I never did, so clearly, Carlsberg UK made the right call.

    It wasn't an uncommon symbol in Northern Europe pre-WWII. The Swastika was the symbol of the Finnish and the Latvian air force, it was on ASEA's logo before 1933 (see attached) and it used to be used in maps as a symbol for power plants. To this day it's used on Japanese maps as a symbol for a temple, although that is changing on the English language maps out as tourists are confused by it.

    May 08, 2017
  • sport's picture
    sport

    Insinuating that Dabitch is uneducated about the ways of the Danes and Carlsberg....

    Friendly reminder that Carlsberg "I get a kick out of you" is but one of the campaigns that Dabitch worked on for Carlsberg while living in Denmark.

    May 08, 2017
  • Dabitch's picture
    Dabitch

    Please don't mention the Carlsberg Ice campaigns - or the now discontinued beer - that was awful on every level, starting at that holographic paper label. Ugh, the nineites.....

    Jul 03, 2017

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