Kayak Casts Scheming Sea Creatures in Bonkers Travel Ads
Long known for its quirky, irreverent humor, travel engine Kayak revs up the weird with help from agency Supernatural and director Tom Kuntz.
First, ritual-robed porpoise/penis hybrids known as "Elites" lounge around a pool and celebrate their fiendish conspiracy to make travel outrageously expensive. When some nerdy dude infiltrates the not-so-secret meeting, he might just wind up as lunch.
I'm not sure this supremely self-conscious silliness—created with Legacy Effects, with remote-controlled animatronic heads atop human actors—entirely works. But it's an unexpected tack, and the baddies are gloriously icky. So ... let's all book with Kayak, I guess.
Supernatural prides itself on combining "insight with machine learning, to create better advertising and deliver real results." To that end, in crafting this campaign, the agency tasks its algorithm with addressing the high price of travel in a provocative way.
And it recommended ... devious dolphin thingies? A.I.'s get more human all the time!
"The Elites are a reaction to inflation and rising prices," says Supernatural CCO and co-founder Paul Caiozzo. "It’s incredibly brave of Kayak to expose the fish people. They are putting their lives at risk. You may also be just by publishing this."
Here at Muse, we live on the edge.
In a separate flight of tongue-in-cheek vignettes below, folks assume they're rich when told they can afford rad vacations. But they haven't come into money. Could the driving force behind their cost-effective getaways be ... Kayak?
"The 'Rich' campaign falls under the same strategy [as 'Elites'], but it is a little more evergreen in content," Caiozzo says. "We will run these ads whenever travel prices rise, so we made a whole bunch using the same actors and the same sets."
Matt Clarke , VP, N.A. Marketing
Rebecca Hansen, Creative Director, N.A.
Stacey McMaster, Brand Director
Arielle Abilo, Senior Content Manager
Sarah Rauth, Senior Marketing Specialist
Paul Caiozzo, Co-founder & CCO
Emily Cabral, Senior Producer
Johan Leandersson, Creative Director
Prit Patel, Copywriter
Nathan Frank, Copywriter
Jørgen Sibbern, Senior Writer
Katie Rochford, Account Director
John Elder, Co-founder & CEO
Tom Kuntz, Director, MJZ
Sophie Brooks, Producer, MJZ
Rodrigo Prieto, Director of Photography, MJZ
Thomas Smith, 1st AD, MJZ
Avelino Rodríguez, Managing Director, Lift
José Barrera, Managing Partner, Lift
Pepe Aguirre, Producer, Lift
Christopher Lagunes, Art Director, Lift
Paola Alfaro, Wardrobe Stylist, Lift
Dan Maloney, Editor, Nomad Editing Co.
Legacy Effects - Animation