If there's one thing we don't see enough of in modern advertising, it's goths. OK, that might be something of an exaggeration, but they are a certainly subsection of the population who have gone unloved for the best part of the last decade. Indeed, the only times in recent moment goths, emos and other stylistically depressed individuals have been represented in advertising, it's been as subjects of ridicule. Leave it to Droga5 to catalyse a sea change in the representation of the blank-faced mopey masses.
“Let this campaign serve as a message to all children of the night; misery is a choice. Fragrance can save you”
Droga5 London has launched a new campaign for Radox, representing the personal care brand’s latest collaboration since Droga5 was appointed its global creative agency back in 2013. The work centres on the power of fragrance and its effect on mood, emphasising how showering with Radox shower gels can help transform moods. That spirit is at the heart of the campaign simply called “Emo.” The spot demonstrates the nature of mood transformation by showing a well-known stereotype, the grumpy goth teenager, in a totally different state to what you might expect as the black-clad teen casts off the shackles of doom to embrace life and show her joy through the medium of dance. The idea is that the brand and agency want people to think about the kind of mood they might want to be put in when getting out of the shower. I've never had a shower THAT good, but I get the message and it's a clever spin on a tired cliché.
David Kolbusz, Chief Creative Officer at Droga5 London, said: “During my misspent teenage years as a hateful, nihilistic young goth, I wish someone had told me about the mood-altering properties of Radox. Let this campaign serve as a message to all children of the night; misery is a choice. Fragrance can save you.”
Droga5 London ECD, Rick Dodds, added: “It is scientifically proven that fragrance can change your mood. So as well as dramatising this, we also wanted the spot itself to have the same transformative power and leave people in a happy and uplifted mood.”
Sebastian Devoto, Global Brand Vice-President at Radox, meanwhile, added: “Radox shower gels have been specially formulated with fragrance combinations that are specifically made to draw out a particular mood. We needed to communicate this in a joyfully uninhibited way and Droga5 London helped us do just that.”
The campaign launched in Mexico from May, and is set to launch on TV in the UK from July through to the end of the year. The spot was directed by Daniel Wolfe from Somesuch, who's also used dance to great effect in a previous campaign for Puma, “Dance Dictionary.” It's definitely going to make any goths reach for the Radox any time soon, and it might be seen as a little condescending by certain corners of the alternative community, but I can see it for what it is; a fun, vibrant piece of modern, relevant, lightly cynical advertising from the agency who pretty much wrote the book on it.
Benjamin Hiorns is a freelance writer and struggling musician from Kidderminster in the UK. He was never a full-fledged goth, but always had a sweet spot for The Cure.