Kia's Gonna Fly Now Thanks to 'Binky Dad' and a TikTok Twist

Papa's the one who needs a pacifier

We've already seen Rocky, aka Sylvester Stallone, appear in a Super Bowl ad for Paramount+. Now, his iconic theme song from the 1976 film powers a Big Game commercial for Kia.

The story revolves around a young family at a ski resort. Dad realizes he's forgotten "Binky"—his kid's pacifier.

Set to the surging strains of "Gonna Fly Now," a frantic flight home in the latest Kia Telluride X-Pro SUV ensues. Dad's quest generates overpass fandom, hashtags and national news coverage. Which is actually how such an event might play out given the right circumstances these days.

And if you're guessing there's a twist...

...there are four of them, actually. The one in the spot's pretty tame, but Kia plans to share a trio of alternate endings exclusively on TikTok. Fans can also submit their own ideas for how the ad should conclude.

David&Goliath created "Binky Dad," described by Kia America VP, marketing Russell Wagner as "a very relatable story, one of a regular guy willing to go to any length to keep his family happy. But even heroes need a helping hand once in a while."

There's nothing breakthrough here. Even the TikTok tie-in feels like 2021. Even so, there's an amiable meta sensibility at play. The scenario speaks to our shared experience as viewers, consuming images, tunes and storylines across countless screens.

Though surely unintentional, the approach embraces and reflects familiar media constructs as we watch Dad race through a packed football stadium, down icy mountain trails and past a worksite near the Los Angeles River. That's one of the most overused yet beloved locations in Hollywood history. Its comforting presence almost winks at the audience, those concrete curves—staples of umpteen high-speed chases in big-budget actioners—as recognizable as old friends.

David Gianatasio
David Gianatasio is managing editor at Clio Awards.

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