KFC "Lie Detector" (2015) :45 (USA)

For its latest in the KFC campaign starring Norm Macdonald, Wieden and Kennedy created an homage to an original Kentucky Fried Chicken spot from 1967 where a bunch of ladies strap Colonel Sanders to a chair and get all Orwell on him to find out what the hell makes his chicken so finger-lickin' good. The homage version relies on a sound gag. As Norm Macdonald sits there answering questions about his chicken (fresh prepared every day, a cheap and tasty meal, etc) when they get to the are you the real Colonel Sanders, a buzzer from the lie detector goes off for fifteen seconds.
Here the joke is more about how he is not the real colonel. Funny, yes, but devoid of any benefit to the product. In fact that part's a throw away, like yeah of course it's tasty etc. Sorry to get all strategic on you, especially on a Monday morning, but if it was a given that KFC tasted good, they wouldn't be desperate for a turnaround. I think that's why I like the original 1967 version, which by the way, is all kinds of dark and insane. Because it relies more on an actual USP: namely, the chicken is so freaking good you are going to want to learn how it was made. What other fast food chain can say that? None. In my opinion that's a smarter strategy than going to the existentialist Colonel path.

By the way, that 1967 ad was kind of an anomaly. Most of the KFC ads were down home and folksy, which W+K does get right, albiet in ironic fashion. If you want to see some other KFC ads check out the Adland archive. We've got some from 1969, 1970 and 1979.

Client: KFC
Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, Ore.
Creative Directors: Eric Baldwin / Karl Lieberman
Copywriter: Jon Marshall
Art Director: Helen Rhodes
Producer: Jennie Lindstrom / Endy Hedman
Social Strategy: John Dempsey
Strategic Planning: Britton Taylor / Lizzie Hanner / Matt Hisamoto
Media/Comms Planning: Alex Barwick
Account Team: Jess Monsey / Jesse Johnson / Andrie Wheeler
Business Affaires: Connery Obeng
Project Management: Chenney Gruber
Executive Creative Directors: Joe Staples / Mark Fitzloff
Head of Production: Ben Grylewicz
Production Company: Smith & Jones Films
Director: Ulf Johansson
Executive Producer: Philippa Smith
Line Producer: Justine Madero
Director of Photography: Andrejz Sekula
Editorial Company: Joint
Editor: Steve Sprinkel
Post Producer: Lauren Pullano
Post Executive Producer: Leslie Carthy
VFX Company: The Mill
VFX Supervisor: Phil Crowe
Flame Artist: John Shirley
VFX Producer: Anastasia von Rahl
Titles/Graphics:
Sound Company: Barking Owl
Sound Designer: Michael Anastasi
Producer: Kelly Bayett
Mix Company: Lime
Mixer: Loren Silber
Producer: Susie Boyajan

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