VW Polo viral - the punchline kills. (uk)

The punchline will kill you. (Scroll down to view the spot.)

Rumor Mill Update: As predicted, this volatile viral has been flagged as a fake at this time. However, if previous and similar events are any indication, the story will morph before it runs its course.

Rumor Mill Update 2: If you go to https://www.leeanddan.com and click on "Virals", then click on "Playstation", a "Volkswagan" (sic) link appears above it, but doesn't appear to go anywhere at this time (8:51 pm Central). So... the current buzzy status is now set at Spec Viral or True Viral.

Rumor Mill Update 3: It has been brought to our attention that the RoSPA (The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) is incensed at this spot. They noticed that the driver of the VW doesn't appear to be wearing a seat belt or any other form of safety harness, thus making him an unsuitable role model for impressionable British youth. "Remember, ladies and gents - Seat belts save lives."

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Anonymous Adgrunt's picture
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AnonymousCoward's picture

Sorry. I read too fast and didn't get all of it. And I meant that it would be banned.

AnonymousCoward's picture

My friend who works with pyro in the theatre reckons that the explosion would be very tricky to do with pyro as it would probalby burn the inside of the polo and perhaps set it on fire!

AnonymousCoward's picture

I'm with Assassin65 on this. I mean a suicide bombers purpose is kill as many around them (with the blast) as possible. What makes the ad humorous is that he didn't. Every other day you hear about another suicide bomber on the news, like Assassin65 said "This is just a poke at reality". So lighten up.

AnonymousCoward's picture

I thought the video was a BLAST!!!!! Hahaha. But seriously, people are way too sensitive . Look at the world we live in. This is just a poke at reality, and people just need to view it as such. If VW execs make a few billion off it, who really cares. Personally I think all of the whiners need to take a bottle of Valiums, chase it with a bottle of Jack Daniel"s finest, and let the rest of the world move on without them. It would be a much better place.

Dabitch's picture

Unlike the hysteria in the states, I think the British branch of VW+DDB has more of a legal leg to stand on if they really intend to sue the LADs for this viral ad. The Guardian reports that they are considering it.

'It gives the impression we've condoned or supported it, and is potentially very damaging to Volkswagen. Our legal department is planning an action and we will decide tomorrow.'

Tomorrow in that quote is today - no word yet if they have filed suit.

amoeba's picture

The only thing I wished Dabitch had asked Dan is if that explosion is post or pyrotechnics. We have a little dispute here at the office about that, anyone here care to guess?

kurtberengeiger's picture

I don't need a handkerchief, I need to have my handkerchief sinuses drained. Thanks all the same.

Neo's picture

That suicide-pun needed a drumroll.

kamari's picture

By jove, I think hes got it. Bless you,
heres a hankerchief.

kurtberengeiger's picture

We all know about virals and what they're supposed to acheive. Relatively cheap "commercials" that spread across the Internet like germs spread in a 747. Agencies get the “web-savvy” Internet-generation to do the media agency’s dirty work for ‘em... At a fraction of the cost. The idea being that virals get the virtual grapevine talking. And the louder it talks, the bigger the ROI. Which makes me suspicious of the recent Ford and VW virals.Ford released a viral to support it’s Sportka, the Ford Ka’s "evil twin". It was harmless enough. The Ford Sportka wacked the proverbial shit out of a pigeon that was about to desecrate it’s shiny new paint job. But when the same Sportka decapitated a cat, all hell broke loose. In a press release, Ford declared that this tasteless piece of work must have emerged from “the bowels of the agency” – and that they we’re nothing more than helpless victims. Now, I’ve no idea if agitated crowds of animal rights activists actually did picket Ford headquarters in Dearborn, but if they did, I can't imagine Ford would have complained much. I mean, the grapevine wasn’t just talking, it was screaming out loud.Can a viral get a better response than that?Now the latest case in point is Volkswagen. Their little Polo has gone under the tagline “Small but tough” for the last couple of years. The tough little Polo has protected policemen in a shoot-out and actually stopped a runaway steamroller. Cute. But not much to get the grapevine fermenting. And then presto, here comes another “renegade” viral. The little Polo is so tough that when a middle-eastern terrorist is about to blow himself up in a car bomb outside a sidewalk café, the explosion is contained inside the car. The grapevine is booming, VW’s going through the motions and everyone who’s anyone knows how tough the little Polo really is.Do I detect a trend or am I just coming down with a nasty case of the viral flu?

Robblink's picture
Dabitch's picture

You need to arm yourself with QT. . :)

AnonymousCoward's picture

anyone know what file format it is?
I cant get this to run... it doesn't appear within the browser page :o(

claymore's picture


caffeinegoddess's picture

I've been thinking, it's not really that far fetched that VW did think of making this as a viral ad. In October 2003, they had that Bollocks ad that was created for TV but because of the language, they ran it as a viral instead. Also by BMP DDB, London.

Or, the other thing is that with all the press that the FordKa Cat ad ignited, it wouldn't surprise me if they thought they could do the same.

AnonymousCoward's picture

Does anybody know if it is a hoax or that VW did release this commercial? On the edge I think or am I too concervative now?

claymore's picture

The FCC? RJ, are you smokin' somethin' and not sharin' it with the rest of us? It's Euro and not for broadcast. Jurisdictionally-speaking, the FCC isn't even in the picture here. That's like the FCC banning tinfoil underwear for flying slug beasts on Pluto.

Then again... considering the current administration...

You got a link to back up that bit of news?

AnonymousCoward's picture

Although it's funny and show that the car is "indestructable," I am thinking that this is inappropiate for television. The FCC has decided to ban it.

slydecix's picture

Exactly how I felt. It went like, "hahaha! what the- oh wait... maybe i shouldn't be laughing at this?" I sent it to a few friends (and got it sent to me by a few others) and all reactions were along those same lines.

From the production values, it seems like VW must've approved it at some level, even if they got it back and decided not to run it.

Dabitch's picture

NYPOST denial (from US VW) and the Revolution magazine denial, but ad-press UK Brand Republic is still hosting the ad "not made for public consumption" on their site. (Brand Republics denial story is here by the way)

Sport's picture

To add to that.. Does adfreak know what they are talking about or did they call DDB NYC? This is a British ad. DDB NYC might not even know about it.

Oh and remember Ford Ka cat decapitation+ the Ogilvy denial.

Dabitch's picture

If it aint by the LAD directing team Lee and Dan (which it is) and aint got nothing to do with DDB (who has VW), then why is Brandrepublic hosting the same ad? Hmm? ;)

James Trickery's picture

After the Ford Ka cat decapitation (bullshit) I don't believe any big name agencies "official word". This is probably done by Lee and Dan for say the Viral Factory or some other viral agency working for DDB. Just like that cat decap.

AnonymousCoward's picture

What a great Viral!
Does anyone know who created it and if so please coud you let me know?
I would love to try and feature it within Contagious, if the creator would rather remain onanonymous then please call ontagious's main switchboard 0207 575 1800 and ask for me..

AnonymousCoward's picture

AdFreak: "We have gotten official word that neither VW nor any of its agencies (including DDB, its lead shop in Europe) had anything to do with this. It is indeed a hoax. "

James Trickery's picture

It's already very viral, I had five different people email me this already. A small reaction-test here in the office: I didn't laugh out loud, as I think I saw the twist coming a mile away, my partner laughed while the guys in the next door office thought it was crap.

ernieschenck's picture

Totally conflicted. It's funny. I laughed. But should I have? It's just one of those Twilight Zone things where you're in a land of both shadow and light. So does anyone know who did this? Can't begin to think VW would have blessed this. Talk about suicide.

sakib's picture

Yeah, I doubt this ad would ever run. It's a kick in the gut. Not sure if I like it or hate it...which of course gives the ad all it needs to become a viral.

Dabitch's picture

The production values say: someone knew what they were doing - the topic says.. wow, that's a mighty edgy viral. Never in a million years would this run on TV.